Occupation: Astronomer and Science Communicator
Year born: 1984
Research Areas: Extragalactic X-ray Binaries, Radio Astronomy
"Science isn’t done until it is communicated."
Tana grew up in Cape Town, South Africa as the daughter of two science teachers. When she was 11 years old, the newspaper printed images from the Hubble Space Telescope on their front page. The pictures inspired Tana to become an astronomer. She went on to study physics and astronomy at university. After receiving a scholarship, she gained her PhD in the UK in 2013.
Tana's research focusses on black holes and neutron stars outside of our Galaxy. She has received awards and recognition for her research. These include an international fellowship for being an outstanding early career researcher.
Tana believes it is important to share the things she learns in her research. Following her PhD, she was Outreach Astronomer at the South African Astronomical Observatory. She currently works in the Netherlands as an Equity and Inclusion Officer for Dutch astronomy. Tana is a lively and engaging presenter. She has appeared on podcasts, at festivals and on UK and South African TV.
Tana is the founder of her own company 'AstroComms'. Through AstroComms, she offers science consulting in education and the media. Tana has been an influential voice for diversity and inclusion. She is committed to building a supportive scientific community. A place that allows scientists to be who they want to be.
Tana is obsessed with Pokemon Go! She values her friendships and likes performing, dancing and watching cricket.