Kimberly Arcand

Providence, RI, US
Field of Work 
Astronomy and Space Science
Computer Science
Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory
Job Title or "Student" 
Visualization Scientist & Emerging Tech Lead
University of RI, Harvard University, Brown University, University of Otago
B.S., M.A
Education Level 
Profile Biography 
Kim was working in biology and public health outreach when she came across a job opening for NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory in 1998. Since she always wanted to be an astronaut when she was little, this opportunity got Kim close to the cosmos but without the hazards of a long distance commute. These days, she enjoys working on science visualization and communications projects, talking about color and light, and writing popular science books.

Hi! I am the Visualization Scientist and Emerging Technologies Lead for NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory that is operated for NASA by the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory. As a producer, director, researcher and author, I am responsible for many aspects of the public “face” of the Chandra X-ray Observatory. This ranges from overseeing or working directly on data-based images, 3D models and prints, exhibits and coding activities, and virtual reality.

I write popular science books for fun. I have seven co-authored books published on astronomy, physics, light, magnitude and scale.

Prior to working for NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory, I worked under a fellowship from the Rhode Island Public Health Partnership (1997) for the University of Rhode Island Center for Vector-Borne Disease on the topic of Lyme disease. I also taught Computer Science 101 at the University of Rhode Island (URI).

I studied biology/pre-med as an undergraduate at URI with special interest in molecular biology/parasitology and computer science. I did post-undergrad work in computer science at Harvard University. I then completed a masters program in Public Humanities at Brown University, concentrating on image and meaning, and also science writing. Then I went on to do my PhD work in science visualization and user response to 3D high energy astrophysics data sets.

I would be happy to chat with you about astronomy and coding.
Writing/blogging, Computing, Reading, Travel, Other
Race & Ethnicity 
Level of Participation 
In-school visit, Online role model
My Experience 
I have been a Role Model many times.
Evenings, Weekdays
Fun demonstrations or materials, Identifying other role models, Other
Program Affiliation 

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