Okay, quick... name two female American astronomers! Okay, name one female American astronomer! Let me introduce you to Heidi Hammel who "uses the world's most powerful telescopes to learn about planets." She is a specialist in Uranus and Neptune. Looking out in space from the observatory atop Mauna Kea, a dormant volcano in Hawaii, Heidi searches and studies these two unique planets and with a combination of luck, talent, and expertise, she has made wonderful discoveries. Heidi was part of the team that found Neptune's Great Dark Spot and she became a celebrity as she watched bits of a comet strike the planet Jupiter. So, how does someone become a female astronomer in the United States? Heidi did not have an even or an easy childhood. Her father, Robert, was an alcoholic and kept a distance from his family. Heidi grew up playing Monopoly with friends, taking piano lessons in junior high school, acting in school plays and growing her love of music and singing. She kept her feelings and her tension inside herself, trying not to show the world how difficult her life was. This is a down-to-earth, heartfelt story of the path that Heidi Hammel's life took. If you are a young girl or if you know a young girl who might dream of making a life in the exploration of outer space, Heidi makes a wonderful role model with her imperfect journey leading to her success as a professional, a wife and a mother of three. 128 pages Ages 9-14 (part of the Women's Adventures in Science series)
Beyond Jupiter The Story of Planetary Astronomer Heidi Hammel (Women's Adventures in Science)
Joseph Henry Press 2006
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