Full Spectrum: Claire Raftery


Dr. Claire Raftery is the Head of Education and Outreach at the National Solar Observatory. Although she is based in Boulder, Colorado, she divides her time between there and Maui - where the NSO is building the Daniel K. Inouye Solar Telescope (DKIST, formerly ATST) at the summit of Haleakala. Claire is leading the NSO into a new era of education and outreach in the run up to DKIST's first light, which is expected in 2020.

Although always interested in science education, Claire had her first official EPO opportunities with the Multiverse Education group at UC Berkeley's Space Sciences Lab where she worked with Laura Peticolas and her team. Her duties at Multiverse covered everthing from teacher professional development, public outreach, international consultancy, and project management.

Claire received her Doctoral Degree from Trinity College in Dublin, Ireland where she began a researching the effects of solar flares and coronal mass ejections on the Sun's lower atmosphere. She spent some time working with the RHESSI X-ray satellite team at UC Berkeley before finding her path in science education.

In additon to her official roles, Claire is the American Astronomical Society’s Solar Physics Division education Chair and the American Geophysical Union's Space Physics and Aeronomy EPO committee secretary. In her spare time, she volunteers her time mentoring students, likes hiking, flying, and playing the bagpipes.


What kind of research have you done?

How did you decide to work in solar physics?

What do you do in your current job?

What advice do you have for people who would like to become a scientist?

Multiverse skin is based on Greytness by Adammer