Cosmic Exploration presentation: Star Cities of the Milky Way

Posted by Lydia on May 27th, 2009

Just as the telescopes of the 17th century opened the sky for discoveries of star clusters and nebulae, 21st century telescopes examining these star cities give us a glimpse of early star formation in the Universe, and of the origin of the basic elements of the periodic table. Some globular clusters harbour black holes, while others may be the remnants of galaxies shredded by the tidal forces of the Milky Way. And above all, globular clusters are magnificent sentinels in the night sky, shining with the power of hundred thousand suns.

The Lunar and Planetary Institute invites all inquisitive adults to attend Dr. Catherine Pilachowski’s presentation Star Cities of the Milky Way. This free public presentation on June 18 is part of the Cosmic Exploration Speaker Series at the Lunar and Planetary Institute (LPI), celebrating the International Year of Astronomy. As we celebrate the 400th anniversary of Galileo’s first use of the telescope, Dr. Pilachowski shares our current understanding of the star cities of the Milky Way – the glorious globular star clusters that surround our galaxy.

Dr. Catherine Pilachowski holds the Kirkwood Chair in Astronomy at Indiana University Bloomington, where she teaches and conducts research on the evolution of stars and the chemical history of the Milky Way Galaxy from studies of chemical composition of stars and star clusters. She served for more than 20 years on the scientific staff of the National Optical Astronomy Observatory in Tucson. She has served on numerous national and international boards and committees and as President of the American Astronomical Society from 2002-2004.

LPI’s Cosmic Exploration presentation begins at 7:30 p.m., and will be followed by a light reception. No reservation is necessary. All inquisitive adults are welcome. LPI is located in the USRA building at 3600 Bay Area Boulevard in the Clear Lake region of Houston; the entrance is located on Middlebrook Drive. The Lunar and Planetary Institute is part of the Universities Space Research Association (USRA).

Further information, a flyer and a map are available at http://www.lpi.usra.edu/education/lectures.

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