Astronomer combines Leicester PhD with stellar TV career

Posted by mjs76 at Jun 28, 2010 03:55 PM |
Astronomy postgraduate has officially one of the coolest jobs in science.

Paul Abel has a couple of useful part-time jobs to help pay the bills while he is finishing his PhD in astrophysics in our Department of Physics and Astronomy. He does a bit of teaching – maths modules for undergraduates – and he co-presents a TV show.

Not just any TV show - it's only The Sky at Night!

Paul has been a friend of Sir Patrick Moore for many years and was asked to do an impromptu audition for the show six months ago, since when he has been appearing regularly to discuss observational astronomy.

The Sky at Night has been broadcast monthly since April 1957 with Sir Patrick presenting every episode except one (due to illness) although in recent years the 87-year-old astronomer has had a number of younger co-presenters, including Paul.

Sir Patrick Moore received an Honorary Degree from the University of Leicester in 1996 for his contributions to science. Fourteen years later, he returned to the University to be made a Distinguished Honorary Fellow, the highest award that the University bestows.

There is an interview with Paul Abel in last Saturday’s Leicester Mercury.