Astronomy Colloquia

Neutrino astronomy - Recent Highlights from IceCube

Speaker: 
Matthias Danninger (UBC Physics & Astronomy)
Event Date and Time: 
Mon, 2014-01-20 16:00 - 17:10
Location: 
Hennings 318
Local Contact: 
Jaymie Matthews
Intended Audience: 
Graduate
Neutrino astronomy covers twelve orders of magnitude in wavelength, from the MeV
diffuse flux of past supernovae to the EeV flux of cosmogenic neutrinos produced in 
interactions of cosmic rays with microwave photons. The highest energy neutrinos
observed to date exceed 1 PeV in energy, a regime of particular interest because 
the neutrinos should point back to the still enigmatic accelerators of the highest
energy Galactic and extragalactic cosmic rays. This makes neutrinos an unique probe
of the universe's highest-energy phenomena.

Describing anisotropy in the gravitational wave background with pulsar timing

Speaker: 
Chiara Mingarellin (University of Birmingham)
Event Date and Time: 
Mon, 2014-01-13 16:00 - 17:10
Location: 
Hennings 318
Local Contact: 
Jaymie Matthews and Ingrid Stairs
Intended Audience: 
Graduate
Pulsar Timing Arrays are currently the only way to search for gravitational radiation 
in the nanohertz band. The main sources of interest are gravitational wave backgrounds 
generated by supermassive black hole binaries or processes in the early Universe. 
Several limits on this background have been set in recent years and searches of 
increasing sensitivity are currently ongoing. All the searches so far have only been
done for isotropic backgrounds.

Photometric properties of Ultra-Compact Dwarf galaxies (UCDs) in the M87, M49 and M60 regions

Speaker: 
Chengze Liu (Shanghai Astronomical Observatory, Chinese Academy of Sciences)
Event Date and Time: 
Mon, 2013-11-25 16:00 - 17:10
Location: 
Hennings 318
Local Contact: 
Jaymie Matthews and Yin-Zhe Ma
Intended Audience: 
Graduate
Next Generation Virgo Cluster Survey (NGVS) is a deep optical survey of Virgo Cluster using CFHT. 
The NGVS images have excellent quality with median seeing~ 0.54" in i band. The Ultra-Compact Dwarf 
galaxies (UCDs), which are believed to be larger than 10 pc, could be resolved in NGVS images. 
Therefore, we obtain a nearly complete and homogenous sample of UCDs across the entire Virgo Cluster. 
In this talk, I would like to introduce the preliminary results of UCDs, including the selection,
luminosity function, color distribution, and so on.

What's a galaxy?

Speaker: 
George Lake (Institute for Theoretical Physics, University of Zürich)
Event Date and Time: 
Mon, 2013-11-18 16:00 - 17:10
Location: 
Hennings 318
Local Contact: 
Jaymie Matthews and Aaron Boley
Intended Audience: 
Graduate
This seems like a simple enough question. Recently, the question has referred to the
difference between dwarf galaxies and star clusters. But, there has been a subtle back 
and forth over the last decades in our understanding of galaxies and clusters of galaxies. 
I will give a simple definition of "galaxy" and show how the phenomenology behind the 
transition and speculate on the physical mechanisms that are responsible. 

NO ASTRONOMY COLLOQUIUM TODAY - UBC IS CLOSED FOR REMEMBRANCE DAY

Speaker: 
None
Event Date and Time: 
Mon, 2013-11-11 16:00 - 17:10
Location: 
Wherever you observe Remembrance

Adventures into the Kuiper Belt: Accretion, composition, and the proto-planetary disc

Speaker: 
Wes Fraser (National Research Council, Victoria, BC)
Event Date and Time: 
Mon, 2013-11-04 16:00 - 17:10
Location: 
Hennings 318
Local Contact: 
Jaymie Matthews
Intended Audience: 
Graduate
It has been common to study the Kuiper Belt with the viewpoint that Kuiper Belt
Objects are largely unprocessed objects which exhibit nearly primordial surfaces.
While this idea has provided a useful framework within which to interpret
observations of the belt, it is becoming ever more clear that this view point is
incorrect. I will initially summarize what we think we know about the accretionary
and dynamical history of the Kuiper Belt. From there, I will discuss various aspects
of my research of the Belt.

The Cosmic Microwave Background

Speaker: 
Krzysztof Gorski (Jet Propulsion Lab / Caltech)
Event Date and Time: 
Mon, 2013-10-21 16:00 - 17:10
Location: 
HENNINGS 201 - Note change of room to accomodate guests from the International Roundtable on Time & Life In The Universe
Local Contact: 
Harvey Richer and Jaymie Matthews
Intended Audience: 
Graduate

NO ASTRONOMY COLLOQUIUM TODAY - UBC IS CLOSED FOR THE THANKSGIVING HOLIDAY

Speaker: 
None
Event Date and Time: 
Mon, 2013-10-14 16:00 - 17:10
Location: 
Home for the holidays

Galileo’s “Two Chief World Systems” and the Confirmation of Copernicanism

Speaker: 
Dennis Danielson, UBC Department of English
Event Date and Time: 
Mon, 2013-10-07 16:00 - 17:10
Location: 
Hennings 318
Local Contact: 
Jaymie Matthews
Intended Audience: 
Graduate

The better part of a century passed before more than a handful of serious scientists accepted Copernicus’s theory (1543) that the Earth rotates while also orbiting the Sun. Galileo’s telescopic as well as literary contributions together form the most famous early chapter in the story of the wider acceptance of heliocentrism. Nonetheless, without diminishing the enormous accomplishments of the first telescopic astronomer, I want to revisit Galileo to show how he “cheated”—and how he continues to skew our reading of the reception of Copernicanism.

Precision Weak Lensing Measurements with CFHTLenS and Beyond

Speaker: 
Hendrik Hildebrandt, Argelander-Institut für Astronomie, Bonn, Germany
Event Date and Time: 
Mon, 2013-09-30 16:00 - 17:10
Location: 
Hennings 318
Local Contact: 
Jaymie Matthews and Ludo van Waerbeke
Intended Audience: 
Graduate
Weak gravitational lensing has been identified as one of the most promising techniques to study the 
'dark sector' of the Universe. Not only is weak lensing capable of making dark matter 'visible' in 
many different kinds of celestial objects, but it also has the potential of measuring the effects 
that the accelerated expansion has on cosmological distances and the growth of structures.
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