In the outer spiral arm at 40,000 miles an hour: thanks and farewell Karen Masters

RealScientists welcomed Karen Masters (@KarenLMasters), reader in astronomy and astrophysics at the Institute of Cosmology and Gravitation, University of Portsmouth in late June. Though based in the UK, Karen joined us from the USA, where she was attending the Sloan Digital Sky Survey meeting.

It’s humbling sometimes to be reminded of the enormity of this universe we inhabit.

And Karen illustrated this simple recipe for making a galaxy that you can try at home*!

*if you can find dark matter at your local providore.


There was even custom conference candy! Who knew space could taste so good.


Karen kindly filled out our post-curation survey, and her answers are below.

In general terms, how did you find your week as a curator?

It was fun. I was concerned I was a bit busy and didn’t have as much time to tweet background as I would have liked.

It can be a shock talking to so many. Did you find the sudden rush of interactions (good and bad) daunting?

I found it exciting.

What were the highlights? Were there any lowlights?

I tweeted an image of a periodic table showing emission line spectra that got RTed a lot. This was a highlight as it was fun to reach so many, but also resulted in lots of pedantic responses which I found a bit of a lowlight!

Is there anything you wanted to get out of / do on the RS account that you didn’t manage to fit in?

It was a busy week for me, so I think I could have done more. I was slightly worried I wasted the opportunity to reach such a big audience.

Did you have a plan? If so, did you stick to it?

Not really.

Do you have any tips or advice for future RS curators?

Having a plan sounds like a good idea!

Thanks once again Karen from all of us here at RealScientists HQ. If you missed anything from her week, the tweets are all collated at the following link.

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