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Megan "Meg" E. Schwamb (born 1984) is an American astronomer and planetary scientist. As of 2018, she is an Assistant Scientist at the Gemini Observatory's Northern Operations Center in Hilo, Hawai’i. Schwamb discovered and co-discovered several trans-Neptunian objects, and is involved with Citizen science projects such as Planet Four and Planet Hunters.

Megan Schwamb
Born1984 (age 34–35)
EducationUniversity of Pennsylvania
California Institute of Technology
Known forDiscovery of (225088) 2007 OR10 and other trans-Neptunian objects, Citizen Science projects, Astrotweeps
AwardsCarl Sagan Medal
Scientific career
FieldsPlanetary astronomy


In 2006, Schwamb graduated from the University of Pennsylvania with a B.A Summa Cum Laude with Distinction in Physics. She went on to study Astrophysics in the California Institute of Technology, graduated Master of Science in 2008. Schwamb finished her Ph.D. in Planetary Science in 2011, also from the California Institute of Technology. Her thesis was researching "Beyond Sedna: Probing the Distant Solar System",[1] and her advisor was Michael Brown.[2]

Between 2010–2013 Schwamb was a post doctoral fellow at Yale University. She worked at the Institute of Astronomy and Astrophysics in the Chinese academy of Taipei in Republic of China (Taiwan) from 2013 until 2016.[3] Since 2016, Schwamb has held the post of Assistant Scientist at the Gemini Observatory.[2] She is the creator and co-founder of Astrotweeps, a Rotation Curation account on astronomy.[4]

Schwamb is involved in citizen science projects. She is a founding science team member for Planet Four, project intended for mapping seasonal fans on the South Pole of Mars.[2] She is also part of the science team leading at Planet Hunters a project in which users analyze data from the NASA Kepler Space Mission while searching for exoplanets.[5]

Awards and honorsEdit

In 2017 she received a Carl Sagan Medal for excellence in public communication, for the creation of the Astrotweeps and Planet Four projects.[4] On 13 April 2017, asteroid 11814 Schwamb, discovered by Schelte Bus at the Siding Spring Observatory in 1981, was named in her honor (M.P.C. 103979).[6][7]

Research discoveriesEdit

She specialized in studying sednoids,[1] and co-discovered several trans-Neptunian objects.[8][9]

List of discovered minor planetsEdit

Megan Schwamb is credited by the Minor Planet Center with the discovery and co-discovery of 16 minor planets during 2007–2010 (see list).[8] In addition to the confirmed discoveries, she also participated in the first observations of the unnumbered objects 2008 ST291, 2012 HG84 and 2012 KU50.

(187661) 2007 JG43 10 May 2007 list[A][B]
229762 Gǃkúnǁʼhòmdímà 17 July 2007 list[A][B]
(225088) 2007 OR10 17 July 2007 list[A][B]
(305543) 2008 QY40 25 August 2008 list[A][B]
(315530) 2008 AP129 11 January 2008 list[A]
(382004) 2010 RM64 9 September 2010 list[B][C]
(386096) 2007 PR44 7 August 2007 list[A]
(445473) 2010 VZ98 11 November 2010 list[B][C]
(471196) 2010 PK66 14 August 2010 list[B][C]
(471210) 2010 VW11 3 November 2010 list[B][C]
(499522) 2010 PL66 14 August 2010 list[B][C]
(504555) 2008 SO266 24 September 2008 list[A][B]
(508338) 2015 SO20 8 October 2010 list
(523618) 2007 RT15 11 September 2007 list[A][B]
(523629) 2008 SP266 26 September 2008 list[A][B]
(528381) 2008 ST291 24 September 2008 list[A][B]
Co-discovery made with:
A M. E. Brown
B D. L. Rabinowitz
C S. Tourtellotte


  1. ^ a b Megan E. Schwamb (2011). "Beyond Sedna: Probing the Distant Solar System" (PDF). California Institute of Technology. Retrieved 25 January 2018.
  2. ^ a b c "Megan E. Schwamb's CV". Retrieved 18 March 2018.
  3. ^ "Megan E. Schwamb's Curriculum Vitae". Retrieved 21 March 2018.
  4. ^ a b "2017 Prize Recipients". Division for Planetary Sciences of the American Astronomical Society. Retrieved 21 March 2018.
  5. ^ "About Planet Hunters - Teams". Retrieved 21 March 2018.
  6. ^ "11814 Schwamb (1981 EW26)". Minor Planet Center. Retrieved 9 December 2017.
  7. ^ "MPC/MPO/MPS Archive". Minor Planet Center. Retrieved 16 October 2018.
  8. ^ a b "Minor Planet Discoverers (Alphabetically)". Minor Planet Center. 24 May 2019. Retrieved 27 May 2019.
  9. ^ "List Of Transneptunian Objects". Minor Planet Center. Retrieved 25 January 2018.

External linksEdit