KOKOMO, Ind. (WISH) - An Indiana University Kokomo professor has received a coveted NASA grant to fund research of neutron stars and black holes.
The grant will provide up to $350,00 to Patrick Motl, an assistant professor of physics at IU Kokomo. More than 180 proposals entered to receive the NASA Astrophysics Theory grant and only 28 programs walked away with the honor.
Motl's five-person team will simulate mergers between black holes and neutron stars. Motl says the density of neutron star matter makes it impossible to study it in a research lab.
"When a star much more massive than our own sun runs out of fuel and dies, it explodes in a supernova explosion," Motl said. "It leaves behind a very dense, small object called a neutron star, or a black hole. Our research will help astronomers identify and study the neutron stars, advancing knowledge in astronomy and astrophysics."
School officials say it is impressive to receive such a grant.