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Jana Chesley

Photo of Jana Chesley


4800 Oak Grove Drive Pasadena, CA 91109

Curriculum Vitae:

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Member of:

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I am from Bratislava, the capital of Slovakia. During grad school, I spent two years working on my Ph.D. thesis at the European Southern Observatory in Germany. After that I went to the Institute for Astronomy in Hawaii, first in a postdoctoral position and then continuing as a research scientist for 13 years. Much of my effort in Hawaii focused ground-based support observations, especially photometric analysis, for three cometary space missions: Stardust, Deep Impact and Stardust-NExT. I moved to California after getting married in 2011 and I started working at JPL in 2013 supporting the NEOWISE mission and conducting follow-up observations of NEOs at JPL’s Table Mountain Observatory. I am married to Steve Chesley, also of JPL, and we have two amazing daughters, born in 2014 and 2015. Swimming and skiing are my passion since childhood and I am a member of the Rose Bowl Masters swim team. When I am not observing, I love to spend time with my family, going for a hike with our dog Komet, reading and baking.


  • Ph.D. - Astronomy & Astrophysics, Comenius University, 1999
  • M.A. - Physics, Comenius University, 1995

Professional Experience

Astronomy observations, data reductions and photometry analyses.

Research Interests

Astrometry and Photometry of Asteroids and Comets.
Ground-based Mission Support and data reduction.

Selected Awards

  • 2020- JPL Voyager Award for leading work on commissioning the TMO 1-m telescope for scientific investigations.
  • 2005 - Asteroid 20187 Janapittichová named in honor of scientific and sport achievements.

Selected Publications

  • Masiero, Joseph R., Mainzer, A. K., Bauer, J. M., Cutri, R. M., Grav, T., Kramer, E., Pittichová, J., Sonnett, S., Wright, E. L., 2020: “Asteroid Diameters and Albedos from NEOWISE Reactivation Mission Years Four and Five”: PSJ 1, 1, 10
  • Lowry, S. C., Weissman, P. R., Duddy, S. R., Rozitis, B., Fitzsimmons, A., Green, S. F., Hicks, M. D., Snodgrass, C., Wolters, S. D., Chesley, S. R., Pittichová, J., and van Oers, P., 2014: “The internal structure of asteroid (25143) Itokawa as revealed by detection of YORP spin-up”: A&A 562, A48, 9.
  • Chesley, S. R., Belton, M. J. S., Carcich, B., Thomas, P. C., Pittichová, J., et. al., 2013: “An updated rotation model for Comet 9P/Tempel 1”: Icarus 222, 2, 516-525.
  • Meech, K. J., A’Hearn, M. F., Adams, J. A., et. al., 2011: “EPOXI: Comet 103P/Hartley 2 Observations from a Worldwide Campaign”: ApJL 734, 1, L1.
  • Hsieh, Henry H., Meech, Karen J., Pittichová, J., 2011: “Main-belt Comet 238P/Read Revis- ited”: ApJL 736, 1, L18.
  • Pittichová, J., Kelley, M. S., Woodward, C. E., Meech, K. J., 2009: “Imaging of Comet 21P/Giacobini-Zinner”, in Bioastronomy 2007: Molecules, Microbes and Extraterrestrial Life, ASP Conference Series, Vol. 420, Eds. K. J. Meech, J. V. Keane, M. J. Mumma, J. L. Siefert, and D. J. Werthimer, San Francisco: Astronomical Society of the Pacific, 2009., p.103.
  • Meech, K. J., Ageorges, N., A’Hearn, M. F., et. al., 2005: “Deep Impact: Observations from a Worldwide Earth-Based Campaign”: Science 310, 5746, 265-269.
  • Bauer, J. M., Meech, K. J., Fernández, Y. R., Pittichová, J., Delsanti, A. C., Boehnhardt, H. and Hainaut, O. R., 2003 “Physical Survey of 24 Centaurs with Visible Photometry”: Icarus 166, 195–211.
  • Pittichová, J. and Meech, K. J., 2003: “Physical Properties of Comet 81P Wild,” in Proceedings of the International Astronomical Conference “Comets, Asteroids, Meteors, Meteorites, Astroblemes, Craters,” Ed. K.I. Churyumov, Vinnytsia, 52-59.