Susan D. Benecchi
(nee Susan D. Kern)
M63 The Sunflower Galaxy
"Faith is the subtle chain that binds us to the infinite."
~ E. Smith
I am a Research Scientist at the Planetary Science Institute where I have a number of HST programs studying Kuiper Belt Objects (KBOs), with a focus on binaries and characterizing KBO candidates for the New Horizons Mission. I am also working with scientists on the New Horizons team to help identify a KBO for our spacecraft to visit after it finishes its studies of the Pluto-Charon system.
My undergraduate degree is from the University of Arizona in Astronomy, Physics and Religious Studies. While there I worked with Dr. Don McCarthy, Dr. Mark Wagner and Dr. Larry Lebofsky. My graduate work was carried out at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in the Earth, Atmospheric and Planetary Sciences Department under the direction, encouragement and mentorship of the Dr. James Elliot. My first post-doc was with Dr. Keith Noll at the Space Telescope Science Institute in Baltimore. Following this I held a postdoctoral fellowship at DTM Carnegie Institution of Washington where I worked to characterize KBOs, with an emphasis on binary objects, using ground-based facilities at Las Campanas Observatory.
Planetary Science Insitute
susank at psi . edu
1700 East Fort Lowell, Suite 106
Tucson, AZ 85719-2395