Saturday Physics for Everyone
|Title||Saturday Physics for Everyone: When Stars Attack! In Search of Killer Supernova Explosions|
|Speaker||Professor Brian D. Fields, Astronomy and Physics|
|Time:||10:15 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.|
141 Loomis Laboratory, 1110 W. Green Street, Urbana, IL 61801
Department of Physics University of Illinois
217 244 2948
|Originating Calendar:||Physics - Saturday Physics for Everyone|
Popular Lecture: The most massive stars are the celebrities of the cosmos: they are very rare, but live extravagantly and die in a spectacular and violent supernova explosion. While these events are awesome to observe, they can take a more sinister shade when they occur closer to home, because an explosion inside a certain "minimum safe distance" would pose a grave threat to Earthlings. We will discuss these cosmic insults to life, and ways to determine whether a supernova occurred nearby over the course of the Earth's existence. We will then present recent evidence that a star exploded near the Earth about 3 million years ago. Radioactive iron atoms have been found in ancient samples of deep-ocean material, and are likely to be debris from this explosion.
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