Star talk slated for Saturday


Doug Johnstone of James Clerk Maxwell Telescope will be the guest speaker at The Universe Tonight at 6 p.m. Saturday at the Onizuka Center for International Astronomy Visitor Information Station on Mauna Kea.

His talk is titled “Unveiling the Turbulent Birth of Stars: Why Many (Different) Eyes Are Better Than One.”

“Stars are not eternal. Our galaxy teems with stellar nurseries and graveyards. But while the death of stars can be seen in spectacular explosions called supernovae, or the slow cooling of smaller stars to a quiet dormant state, their birth remains shrouded in mystery,” said Johnstone.

“We can’t just look at stars being born because they form inside thick, murky puddles of gas located primarily along the spiral arms of the galaxy. “Instead, astronomers use radio telescopes to peer in and through these puddles to witness the birth of stars.”

For more information, call the Visitor Information Station 961-2180 or visit www.ifa.hawaii.edu/info/vis.

Recent observations with the Herschel Space Observatory, the SCUBA-2 Camera at the JCMT, and the soon to be completed ALMA Observatory in Chile, are transforming understanding of stellar birth.

“Let me take you on an incredible journey from telescopes on remote, dry mountaintops, like Mauna Kea, to the depths of space in order to reveal how stars, and the planets around them, form,” said John- stone.

The Universe Tonight is a free presentation on the first Saturday of every month. A member of the Mauna Kea astronomy community shares his or her mana‘o and research with the public. Stargazing follows until 10 p.m.

Doug’s main research interests follow the formation of stars and planetary systems.He began his professional life as a theorist at the University of California, Berkeley, working on the evolution of circumstellar disks around young stars, back before extra-solar planet detections were common. He has spent time at the Canadian Institute for Theoretical Astrophysics, the University of Toronto, and the National Research Council of Canada, in Victoria, BC. Today, Dr. Johnstone’s research focuses on the formation and evolution of structure in molecular clouds, attempting to disentangle the physical processes through which a molecular cloud sheds into individual stars.

Contact Information —————————————————————— Person submitting item: Janet Nathani

Phone: 9612180

E-mail: nathani@hawaii.edu

Web Site (if any): http://www.ifa.hawaii.edu/info/vis/

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