Most galaxies are so far away that they appear to us only as faint smudges. However, for the nearest galaxies in our cosmic neighborhood, the clarity and sensitivity of the Hubble Space Telescope transforms them galaxies from smudges into spectacular collections of individual stars. These observations allow astronomers to study how galaxies form and evolve one star at a time. In this talk, I will highlight some of the amazing science and images produced by Hubble observations of local galaxies from the past three decades. The pinnacle of these studies is the Panchromatic Hubble Andromeda Treasury (PHAT) program, an 800 hour Hubble survey of our sibling galaxy Andromeda, and one of the largest Hubble programs ever conducted. I will describe the PHAT survey and its scientific impact. I will discuss plans for James Webb Space Telescope, which will succeed Hubble as the most sensitive telescope in existence following its launch in 2021.
Speaker: Dan Weisz, UC Berkeley
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