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Home Forums General Discussion UCL's Annual Festival of Astronomy

This topic contains 2 replies, has 3 voices, and was last updated by  Brian Blake 1 year, 2 months ago.

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    Christina Chester
    Topics: 19
    Replies: 196

    Honorary Flamsteed member, Dr Francisco Diego of UCL, has made us aware of UCL’s annual festival of astronomy, astrophysics and particle physics. The festival will entail exhibits and lectures that may be of interest to Flamsteed members.


    Website: http://www.ucl.ac.uk/your-universe


    There are 3 major lectures. These are free, but you’ll need to book via the above website as they are very popular and spaces are limited. All lectures in the grand Gustave Tuck theatre, UCL campus.

    The lecture details are as follows:



    Thursday 2nd march 18:30

    Astronomy in Chile, working at the largest optical telescope on Earth

    Speaker: Dr Roger Wesson, UCL Physics & Astronomy

    Summary: From 2011-2016 I worked in Chile at the Very Large Telescope, one of the world’s premier astronomical observatories. I’ll talk about why Chile is the best place in the world for cutting edge observatories, how the VLT actually works, and what it’s like to operate it. There are amazing animations of the wide night sky.

    About the speaker: I got my PhD from UCL in 2004, and then spent two years working in the civil service, before returning to astronomy in 2006. My research since then has been on supernova explosions and the materials that form in their remnants. I was at UCL until 2011, when I went to Chile to work at the Very Large Telescope. I returned to UCL once again in 2016.



    Friday, 3 March 2017 at 18:15

    Smashing Physics – Latest news from the energy frontier

    Speaker: Professor Jonathan Butterworth, UCL Physics & Astronomy

    Summary: The ATLAS and CMS experiments at the Large Hadron Collider at CERN are probing the fundamental forces and particles of matter with unprecedented resolution. What have we learned so far, what is happening now, and what might come next?

    About the speaker: I work on the ATLAS experiment at the CERN Large Hadron Collider (LHC). I led a UCL group which contributed to the tracking, trigger and software. My own work has focused on physics processes at the LHC which will help us discover more about electroweak symmetry breaking, or basically “why some things have mass”. This included searching for the Higgs boson, discovered in July 2012. I wrote some of the first papers on using the substructure of hadronic jets to identify the decays of boosted, massive particles – including the Higgs. I was convener of the ATLAS Monte Carlo group (2007-2009) and of the ATLAS Standard Model group (2010-2012).

    Jon is the author of Smashing Physics and also writes for the Guardian. Copies of Smashing Physics will be available to buy at the event and signed by the author.



    Saturday, 4 March 2017, 18:00

    Space Missions to Giant Planets – Looking Back at Cassini and Looking Forward to JUICE

    Speaker: Dr Nick Achilleos, UCL Physics & Astronomy

    Summary: Spacecraft which have visited other planets in our Solar System have uncovered a wealth of knowledge as to how the space environments of these planets are formed, and how they compare with that of our Earth. Particularly important is the interaction between a planet’s magnetic field and the solar wind – the stream of charged particles continually ‘blowing away’ from the Sun. In this talk, we will look at three important discoveries which have been made with the Cassini spacecraft which has been orbiting the planet Saturn for more than a decade – specifically, discoveries in which Saturn’s magnetic field plays an important role. We will also look at some of the plans related to the JUpiter ICy moon Explorer (JUICE) mission, which is going to revisit the magnetosphere of the planet Jupiter in the future, and in particular Jupiter’s magnetized moon, Ganymede.

    About the speaker: My current research interests broadly cover the magnetospheres and ionospheres of giant planets (Jupiter and Saturn) and how these systems are coupled together. Previously, I have been a mission planner for the team who manage the magnetometer instrument onboard the Cassini spacecraft, currently orbiting the planet Saturn – I am a science co-investigator at present for the Cassini magnetometer team, as well as the JMAG magnetometer team for the JUICE (JUpiter ICy moons Explorer) mission, currently being developed and due for launch in 2022.


    If clear, after the lectures there will be telescopes out, looking at Venus, the Moon, Pleiades, and Orion.


    Topics: 38
    Replies: 593

    Thanks for the info, Christina.  Sounds like some fascinating lectures.


    The specific link to book the lectures on were on a different page on the website btw:




    Brian Blake
    Topics: 188
    Replies: 409

    I would recommend this, I have attended in previous years as a volunteer.

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