Alicia Soderberg (Harvard/Cfa) - September 16, 2013 at 12:10 pm
For decades, the study of stellar explosions -- supernovae -- have focused
almost exclusively on the strong optical emission that dominates the
bolometric luminosity in the days following the ultimate demise of the
star. Yet many of the leading breakthroughs in our understanding of
stellar death have been enabled by obtaining data at other wavelengths.
For example, I have shown that 1% of all supernovae give rise to powerful
relativistic jets, representing the biggest bangs in the Universe since
the Big Bang. My recent serendipitous X-ray discovery of a supernova in
the act of exploding ("in flagrante delicto") revealed a novel
technique to discover new events and provide clues on the shock physics at
the heart of the explosion. With the advent of sensitive new radio
telescopes, my research group combines clues from across the
electromagnetic spectrum (radio to gamma-ray), leading us to a holistic
study of stellar death, the physics of the explosions, and their role in
fertilizing the Universe with new elements, by providing the community
with cosmic autopsy reports.
The seminar will be held in B-1 Hearst Field Annex.
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