Dr. Frank Summers is an astrophysicist at Hubble’s Space Telescope Science Institute, where he specializes in bringing astronomy discoveries to the public. He helps produce news and educational materials, gives public presentations, and creates science visualizations and animations.
He is the director of the IMAX short film “Hubble: Galaxies Across Space and Time,” which won the Large Format Cinema Association’s Best Short Film Award in 2004, and has collaborated on Microsoft Research’s World Wide Telescope project. He has also produced a DVD course, “New Frontiers: Modern Perspectives on the Solar System”, with the Teaching Company.
Summers was previously at the American Museum of Natural History’s Hayden Planetarium in New York, where he created astronomy exhibits for the opening of the Rose Center for Earth and Space. He received his Ph.D at the University of California, Berkeley, and performed research at Princeton and Columbia Universities, focusing on computer simulations of galaxies and the universe.
His interests encompass the artistic realm as well as the scientific. Summers was a nationally-ranked competitive ice dancer in his youth, and was director and choreographer with a student dance company in college. During graduate school, he took up ballroom dance and became team leader of the college competitive team. In addition to hosting Hubble’s Universe, Summers hosts and frequently presents the public lecture series at STScI in Baltimore, MD.