Events Archive

De-projecting astronomical surveys

Tue, May 10, 2016 at 1:00 pm

131 Campbell Hall

Brice Menard (JHU)

Observations of celestial objects are inherently a 2D mapping on the sphere but astrophysical studies usually require the knowledge of 3D positions. For most extragalactic sources, this estimation relies on photometric redshifts which require strong assumptions and can lead to catastrophic failures. In this talk I will show how it is possible to use clustering measurements to infer redshifts …

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Astro Night - May 5th

Thu, May 5, 2016, 7:45 pm to 10:15 pm

Campbell Hall

Lauren Weiss (UCB)

Astro Night is a free stargazing and lecture event open to the public. Held on the first Thursday of the month (during select months, as weather permits), members of the public are invited to take part in guided stargazings using our fleet of telescopes, including our 17-inch telescope located in our roof-top observatory, in addition to attending a lecture from one of our many researchers. Official date may vary to accommodate weather conditions.

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Agnostic Approaches to Gravity

Tue, May 3, 2016 at 1:00 pm

131 Campbell Hall

Tessa Baker (Oxford/Penn)

The past decade has witnessed an explosion in the number of alternative gravity theories in the literature. Unfortunately, progress in testing these theories against cosmological data and eliminating them has been much slower. This has left us uncertain which direction in the ‘theory landscape’ is most worthy of our attention. I’ll present a new, theoretically consistent …

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The Origins and Implications of Turbulence in Galaxies

Mon, May 2, 2016 at 12:00 pm

131 Campbell Hall

Blakesley Burkhart (Harvard)

Magnetic fields and turbulence are vital components in galactic processes, including cosmic ray transport, interstellar medium (ISM) structure formation and star formation. However turbulence is difficult to measure observationally and the role of simulations is vital for both testing theories of ISM turbulence and gauging observational diagnostics via synthetic observations. In this talk I …

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Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy (SOFIA): Overview, The First Science Results, and Future Opportunities

Thu, Apr 28, 2016 at 4:00 pm

1 LeConte Hall

Eric Becklin (URSA SOFIA)

The joint U.S. and German Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy (SOFIA), to develop and operate a 2.5-meter infrared airborne telescope in a Boeing 747SP, has now successfully obtained first science with 6 instruments.   These instruments are the FORCAST camera in the 5 to 40 micron spectral region, the GREAT heterodyne spectrometer in the 63 to 240 micron spectral region, …

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Department Lunch Talk - April 28th

Thu, Apr 28, 2016 at 12:30 pm

131 Campbell Hall

Leslie Rogers (UC Berkeley)
Tuomas Savolaien (Aalto University)
Eric Becklin (SOFIA)

The Department Lunch Talk series is a weekly event that features three 20 minute talks presented mainly by local scientists of any level to present their work to a broad spectrum of the department and usually includes one short talk by the astronomy colloquium speaker of the day.  Subjects can include personal scientific research, reporting on other work appearing in journals, education and public outreach efforts, science policy, and professional development issues.

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The Masses, Densities, and Orbital Dynamics of Exoplanets

Wed, Apr 27, 2016 at 3:00 pm

131 Campbell Hall

Lauren Weiss (UC Berkeley)

We live in a golden era of exoplanet discovery and characterization. In the past few years, the Kepler Mission has discovered over 4000 exoplanets, enabling rich empirical studies of planet occurrence, composition, formation, and evolution. In particular, Kepler's 400 multi-planet systems represent the end-states of planet formation. Their orbital dynamics and planet compositions …

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Post-Starburst Galaxies: Tracers of Galaxy Evolution and the Unlikely Hosts of Tidal Disruption Events

Tue, Apr 26, 2016 at 1:00 pm

131 Campbell Hall

K. Decker French (Arizona)

Post-starburst galaxies are in transition between star-forming galaxies and early-types, and represent a clear path for galaxies to transform from star-forming to quiescence. Many show signs of a recent galaxy-galaxy merger and a newly-evolved stellar bulge, and most have LINER-like emission, which may indicate low luminosity AGN activity. Thus, the study of this short-lived phase of galaxy …

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Global Radiation MHD Simulations of Black Hole Accretion Disks

Thu, Apr 21, 2016 at 4:00 pm

1 LeConte Hall

Jim Stone (Princeton)

The inner regions of accretion flows in luminous sources such as AGN and X-ray binaries are radiation dominated.  In the case of AGN, radiation and winds produced by such flows are thought to be an important feedback mechanism during galaxy formation in massive halos.  I present new results from numerical studies of the magnetohydrodynamics of accretion this regime.  These …

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Department Lunch Talk - April 21

Thu, Apr 21, 2016 at 12:30 pm

131 Campbell Hall

Avi Shporer (Caltech)
Paul Duffell (UC Berkeley)
Jim Stone (Princeton) -

The Department Lunch Talk series is a weekly event that features three 20 minute talks presented mainly by local scientists of any level to present their work to a broad spectrum of the department and usually includes one short talk by the astronomy colloquium speaker of the day.  Subjects can include personal scientific research, reporting on other work appearing in journals, education and public outreach efforts, science policy, and professional development issues.

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CIPS Seminar: Enceladus Series - April 20

Wed, Apr 20, 2016 at 3:00 pm

131 Campbell Hall

Rich Mathies (UCB)
Christopher McKay (NASA)

This week's CIPS seminar features two speakers - please click "more" for complete talk information.

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Revisiting large scale structure analysis techniques in the DESI era

Tue, Apr 19, 2016 at 1:00 pm

131 Campbell Hall

Nikhil Padmanabhan (Yale)

Galaxy redshift surveys are powerful cosmological probes, and the next generations of these surveys, including DESI, Euclid and WFIRST, forecast sub-percent statistical errors on the expansion and growth rate of the Universe. I’ll aim to explore some of the analysis challenges that these surveys present, and possible approaches to address these. I’ll focus on two specific problems. …

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Cal Day 2016

Sat, Apr 16, 2016, 10:00 am to 3:30 pm

Come explore the department of Astronomy! See more for a list of events and times.

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The importance of being eccentric: stars and gas in the Galactic center

Thu, Apr 14, 2016 at 4:00 pm

1 LeConte Hall

Ann-Marie Madigan (UC Berkeley)

The center of our Galaxy is home to a supermassive black hole, SgrA*, and a nuclear star cluster a million times more dense than our local neighborhood. In this talk I will present the latest observations of the stars and gas clouds that live in this extreme environment. I’ll show how their surprising dynamics helps explain a wealth of observational data from event horizon scales all the …

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Department Lunch Talk - April 14

Thu, Apr 14, 2016 at 12:30 pm

131 Campbell Hall

Kearn Grisdale (U. Surrey)
Dan Lacoanet (UC Berkeley)
Ann-Marie Madigan (UC Berkeley)

The Department Lunch Talk series is a weekly event that features three 20 minute talks presented mainly by local scientists of any level to present their work to a broad spectrum of the department and usually includes one short talk by the astronomy colloquium speaker of the day.  Subjects can include personal scientific research, reporting on other work appearing in journals, education and public outreach efforts, science policy, and professional development issues.

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