Schooling in SWFL

FGCU Professor Receives Grant From NASA

Dr. Derek Buzasi led a group of team members from around the world to compete for the grant. He is one of only 30 people to receive the grant for this project, according to Buzasi.

“I was pretty excited,” Buzasi said. “I have what I think is a really cool project.”

The mission is NASA’s launch of a transiting exoplanet survey satellite (TESS) that is scheduled to launch on April 16. NASA allowed scientists from around the world to compete for spots on the research team of this expedition.

While the purpose of TESS is to discover new planets, Buzasi argued his research into the stars was important and necessary.

“What makes it unique is that I was part of a project that did this from Space Four the very first time,” Buzasi said, “and the targets we’re going to look at with TESS are going to be the same ones we looked at 10-15 years ago.”

Buzasi plans to use the information to measure the differences in the size of the star over the years and create a modern history of what is happening in the solar system.

“People are always interested in the world we live on and the universe we live in and this kind of contributes to that,” Buzasi said.

Buzasi has a long history of working with astronomy and space discoveries and says his research will contribute to the future knowledge of these massive stars.

“We’re learning about the early stages of the lives of stars,” Buzasi said “that eventually will explode and become black holes.”