Computational Scientist, Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physics
Dustin Lang is an astronomer who works on surveys that are mapping huge swaths of the sky. This occasionally involves going to the telescopes to collect data, but mostly involves writing software to analyze the observational data that have been collected. The volumes of data involved require the use of national supercomputing facilities, or, in some cases, custom-built supercomputers. These innovative software and hardware combinations allow Dustin and collaborators to collect massive samples of previously rare events such as Fast Radio Bursts, and to produce enormous 3-d maps of the universe that are used to help understand how the universe is growing over cosmic time. Dustin got a Ph.D in Computer Science in 2009 and then moved into astronomy, and is currently a Computational Scientist at Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physics where he splits his time between his own research and helping other researchers make effective use of computing.