Dr. Nick Sterling has received time on the 8.2-meter Very Large Telescope in Chile, to obtain deep near-infrared spectrum of planetary nebulae, the ejecta of dying stars with masses similar to the Sun. The goal of these observations is to detect very rare elements, with atomic numbers > 30, to better understand how they are produced by low-mass red giant stars. Dr. Sterling is leading this investigation in collaboration with an international team of astronomers from seven different countries.