As published by vivanews.com, a couple months ago, there was a discovery in the world of astronomy; that was the discovery of anew planet done by Max Planck Institut fur Astronomie (MPIA) in Germany. As reported on Thursday, November 18, 2010, the team named the new planet HIP 13044b.
The news had spread to all over the world, but unfortunately, only few people knew that again and again, an Indonesian was involved in the research. Indonesian should beproud because this “alien” planet finder team of astronomers was led by an Indonesian, named Johny Setiawan, Dr.rer.nat. Although brilliant in foreign countries, this man was not so famous in Indonesia so that many Indonesian people do not know him clearly.
Johny Setiawan, Dr.rer.nat., who was born August 16, 1974 is now working at the Max Planck Institute for Astronomy (MPIA),Germany. Remarkably, he was the only non-Germans who became the chairman of the project team. Formerly, Johny joined as a post-doctoral researcher at the MPIA, in the Department of the Planet and Star Formation since June 2003. In the same year, he began leading the research in the observation of stars and planets ESO La Silla. In addition, he also worked specifically on a number of projects like ESPRI (Search for Planets with PRIMA / Phase-referenced Imaging and Micro-arcsecond Astrometry).
Before the recent discovery of HIP 13044b, Johnny and his team found about 10 new planets, although not all published. In 2008, for example, he and his team found a planet named TW Hya b. The planet was around the star TW Hydrae and located in the constellation Hydra, a distance of 180 light years from Earth. This discovery shocked the world of astronomy, because within the last 12 years, none of the planet that came from young stars.
As a native of Indonesia, Johny masters the mother tongue, Indonesian. His work and social gather in Europe makes him fluent in German, English, Spanish, and French. Besides working at the MPIA, Johnny actively gives lectures about astronomy, both in Germany and Indonesia. According to him, social and public activities in the scientific community, and the relationship between academics, science and non-science are very important to transfer knowledge in the horizontal and vertical directions. Besides busy as a scientist, Johnny also has a hobby of cooking. He can cook almost any type of traditional Indonesian cuisine, which often served to his fellow astronauts.