Joey Key presenting at AAAS meeting


School of STEM Assistant Professor of Physics Joey Shapiro Key will be a panelist at the American Association for the Advancement of Science annual meeting to share her work in helping research and communicate a discovery that proved Einstein’s general theory of relativity.

The Feb. 19 session during the meeting in Boston, “Gravitational Waves: Communicating the Science and Wonder of LIGO,” will discuss how scientists worked with traditional and social media to announce the first observed ripples in the fabric of spacetime.

A gravitational wave from the collision of two black holes was detected in September 2015 at the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-wave Observatory (LIGO), which is located in Livingston, Louisiana, and Hanford, near Richland, Washington. 

The panel will discuss how scientists prepared to share that discovery with the public and how to build an appreciation of science more broadly.

Key, who previously served as a research assistant professor at the Center for Gravitational Wave Astronomy at the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley, joined the UW Bothell faculty this year. In addition to research in gravitational-wave data analysis, Key is interested in how to best teach physics and astronomy.

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