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Acclaimed astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson speaks at UT Arlington

News Release — 10 February 2009


Media contact: Sue Stevens, Senior Media Relations Officer, (817) 272-3317,

ARLINGTON - Neil deGrasse Tyson, director of the Hayden Planetarium at the American Museum of Natural History in New York and host of the PBS educational television show "NOVA scienceNOW, will speak at 8 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 17, in Texas Hall, 711 W. Nedderman Drive at The University of Texas at Arlington.

Tyson, an astrophysicist, is a frequent guest on "The Daily Show with Jon Stewart" and "The Colbert Report." He is author of numerous books, including "The Pluto Files: The Rise and Fall of America's Favorite Planet" and "Death by Black Hole and other Cosmic Quandaries," will speak as part of the University's Maverick Speakers Series.  His subject is "The Cosmic Perspective: How the astrophysicists view life, the universe and everything." The event is free but tickets are required. They may be printed from the Maverick Speakers Series Web site at

Tyson was born and raised in New York City, where he was educated in the public schools before going on to earn his undergraduate degree in physics from Harvard University, his master's from the University of Texas at Austin and his doctorate in astrophysics from Columbia University. His professional research interests are broad, but include star formation, exploding stars, dwarf galaxies and the structure of our Milky Way. He obtains his data from the Hubble Space Telescope, as well as from telescopes in California, New Mexico, Arizona and in the Andes Mountains of Chile.

In addition to dozens of professional publications, Tyson is a monthly essayist for Natural History magazine. His book is "Origins: Fourteen Billion Years of Cosmic Evolution,' co-written with Donald Goldsmith, is the companion book to the PBS-NOVA four-part mini-series "Origins," which premiered in September 2004 with Tyson as on-camera host. 

Tyson is the recipient of nine honorary doctorates and the NASA Distinguished Public Service Medal. His contributions to the public appreciation of the cosmos have been recognized by the International Astronomical Union in their official naming of asteroid "13123 Tyson." On the lighter side, Tyson was voted "Sexiest Astrophysicist Alive" by People magazine in 2000.
Tyson is the first occupant of the Frederick P. Rose Directorship of the Hayden Planetarium. He lives in New York City with his wife and two children.


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