Tamara Davis, like many, dreamed of being a space explorer from a young age, and space explorer she did become. Now an award-winning astrophysicist, Tamara is featuring in Living Universe, a feature documentary dubbed as science faction.
“I became an astrophysicist by just following my nose and always pursuing passionately the most interesting thing in front of me. As a kid, I loved science fiction stories, and was inspired enough by the space program that I wanted to be an astronaut, but never had any grand ambition or expectation of what I’d do when I grew up,” she said.
Her family was not involved in the world of academia and none of her friends were interested in the field, however Tamara stumbled into her PhD and has never looked back. “I loved the freedom to explore whatever I found most interesting, and found it fascinating to try to use the natural phenomena that are going on up in space, to try to understand the fundamental physics that govern our lives here on Earth.”
Living Universe is a chance for Tamara to combine her work and creativity. The filmmakers approached their project intending to be authentic and factual. “I heard about the Living Universe when the producers approached me to propose I become the voice of the artificial intelligence that pilots the space ship. The ship is called Artemis, and her mission is to go visit a planet orbiting one of our nearest neighbouring stars and search for life. They wanted an actual astrophysicist to play the role, and how could I refuse such an opportunity?”
Tamara’s space exploring has not only taken her through the stars and planets but also across the earth itself. “My research has taken me to fascinating places from European castles to the mountains of Chile, from North American space centres to Indian centres of learning, and everywhere I go I have the privilege of working with amazing and inspiring colleagues who are passionate about what they do.”
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