Abhimat Gautam


UCLA Planetarium

I regularly give planetarium shows to public and local school audiences at the UCLA Planetarium. Shows consist of a special topic portion (with topics ranging to solar system astronomy to stellar and galactic astronomy, depending on audience age), and a star show. I’ve also developed special topic shows titled “How to take pictures of a black hole!” and “Neutron Stars and Pulsars”, both suitable for a general public audience.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, I created and hosted a virtual planetarium show aimed for the general public, about the Milky Way, the center of the galaxy, and radio interferometry images of black hole shadows!

As a graduate student at UCLA, I served as a graduate student coordinator helping run the UCLA Planetarium for 5 years. With approximately 4000 guests annually, the planetarium is the largest astronomy outreach at UCLA. As coordinator, I helped organize visits to the planetarium for local schools and recruit graduate student volunteers for our shows.

Science Writing

I like to share my enthusiasm for science and astronomy through writing. My current outlet for this is my personal blog Radial Infall.

In the past, my science writing mostly went on my (now retired) blog Astronomy and Space. I have also regularly contributed to the Lunar and Planetary Institute’s (now also retired) website MyMoon.

UCLA Astronomy Live!
and Exploring Your Universe

I have volunteered for UCLA’s Astronomy Live!, visiting local K–12 schools to perform various astronomy demonstrations.

I’ve served on the organizing committee for 4 years on UCLA’s annual science event, Exploring Your Universe. In addition to helping coordinate the general logistics of the event, I developed the overall design of the event (detailed in much more detail over here!).