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Planet-searcher Awarded Fellowship
University of Hawaii astronomer Michael Liu has been awarded a prestigious Sloan Foundation Research Fellowship to search for newly-formed planets outside of our solar system.
This year, the Sloan Foundation made eight awards to young scientists in the field of astrophysics. The fellowships were established in 1955 to provide support and recognition to early-career scientists and scholars, often in their first appointments to a university. Thirty-two Sloan Fellows have won Nobel Prizes later in their careers, and hundreds have received other honors.
Liu grew up in the Washington DC area and is a graduate of Cornell University and University of California at Berkeley. He came to the University of Hawaii as the Beatrice Watson Parrent Fellow in 2000 and was appointed to an assistant professorship in 2004.
Liu was first introduced to astronomy in Hawaii while doing graduate work in California. "Some of my doctoral research involved observing with the telescopes on Mauna Kea. The first time I came here, I remember how fantastic it was to visit Hawaii in the wintertime, while the rest of the country was cold and snowy. I feel lucky to be living here and doing astronomy at UH."
The Institute for Astronomy at the University of Hawaii conducts research into galaxies, cosmology, stars, planets, and the sun. Its faculty and staff are also involved in astronomy education, deep space missions, and in the development and management of the observatories on Haleakala and Mauna Kea.