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Mink, Jessica

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Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory staff

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  • Jessica Mink is a positional astronomer and software developer at the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory.  After getting Bachelors and Masters degrees from MIT, she worked in the Laboratory for Planetary Science at Cornell where she co-discovered the rings of Uranus. When her research group moved back to MIT, she contributed to the discovery of Neptune's rings and detection of the extent of Pluto's atmosphere. Moving to SAO, she developed some key workstation and mapping software to reduce and analyze data from the Space Shuttle Spacelab 2 Infrared Telescope and data reduction and analysis data pipelines for ground-based spectrographs used to study everything from exoplanets to Large Scale Structure.  Along the way, she wrote the astronomical software packages WCSTools and RVSAO,which have been widely-used to work with spatial positions on scales from the solar system to nearby stars to the Milky Way galaxy to the positions of other galaxies in space.