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The National Science Foundation CAREER award is the foundation’s most prestigious award aimed at assistant professors. The awardees are junior faculty who will serve as academic leaders in both research and teaching, and it includes a grant for both research and outreach activities over a five-year period.

Prof. Mann’s research focuses on the study of young planets around other stars (exoplanets). The goal is to understand how planets evolve over their lifetimes. A mantra of exoplanet research is ‘know thy planet, know thy star,’ since our understanding of planets is tightly linked to our knowledge of their stellar host. The CAREER grant is aimed at studying the properties (masses, radii, luminosities, and ages) of the youngest stars in the Solar neighborhood. Prof. Mann’s team will focus on stars in groups of coeval associations to build generalized relationships between stellar properties and map out how stars change in the early stages of their life. While a key motivation is to better understand planetary systems, the work will inform a wide variety of other research on star and planet formation.

Part of the program is to build an exhibit at the Morehead Planetarium and Science Center to share the team’s research with the North Carolina community.

More information on the award can be found at

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