RASC Calgary: Tracing the Lives, Deaths, and Explosions of Massive Stars

Event Date: 
Thursday, January 21, 2021 - 21:30 to 23:00 EST

Tracing the Lives, Deaths, and Explosions of Massive Stars

Presented by Sarafina Nance

RASC Calgary


Supernovae are cosmic events of gigantic power. Their explosions can shine as bright as a galaxy, a pinprick of extraordinarily bright light in the night sky. What is less well-understood, however, is which stars reach the point of explosion and how they evolve to their deaths. Interestingly, their explosions provide astronomers with key tools to uncover fundamental aspects of our Universe. While we know that the Universe is expanding at an accelerated rate due to dark energy, the rate of the expansion of the Universe is not well-constrained. Supernovae provide us with independent ways to measure this expansion and works to resolve one of the most pivotal questions in astronomy: How fast is the Universe really expanding?

Safrina's Biography:

Sarafina received her undergraduate degree from the University of Texas at Austin's College of Natural Sciences. Her honours thesis was titled: "A Theoretical Investigation of Supernovae Progenitors". There she used astroseismology to understand stars that were about to undergo a supernova. Sarafina now works as a PhD student in the Department of Astronomy at the University of California, Berkeley. She investigates supernovae and uses them as a means to study both the make-up and ultimate fate of the universe. She works with the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory Centre for Computational Cosmology to use supercomputers to build models of the explosions of supernovae in the final stages.

The Zoom event will take place on January 21, 2021, @ 7:30 pm MST (9:30 pm EST)!

Join the Zoom Event Here! (No Registration Required)

Passcode: 106513

Note: if you have a Calgary Public Library Card you can also register HERE!