Hot Topics in Astronomy


Zoom Lecture Series
Cost: $5 per class


Meet the Black Hole
August 7 @ 7 pm
There is perhaps nothing so fascinating or seductive in modern astronomy as the
black hole. In this talk, we will introduce where the concept originated, how it
developed, how we found evidence for them, and now how we are observing

The New Solar System – What’s New in the Neighborhood?
September 4 @ 7 pm
We all learned about the solar system when we were in school. But the past 50
years has been a golden age for solar system exploration. We have had flyby
missions to all the planets now, and orbiter missions to all except Neptune and
Uranus. In this talk we’ll fill you in on the latest on our neighbors and in our
understanding of how the system formed. We may even broach the subject of

Exoplanets – the Emerging Frontier
October 2 @ 7 pm
One of the real breakthroughs in astronomy in the past 30 years has been the
ability to discover planets orbiting stars other than our sun, In this talk we’ll
discuss how this can be done, and even more amazingly, how we are learning
about the characteristics of these worlds. And finally, we will discuss the
importance of these discoveries to the understanding of our own solar system.

The Milky Way – Our Intimate Neighborhood in Space
November 6 @ 7 pm
Our solar system lies in a vast neighborhood of stars called the Milky Way.
Although the Milky Way in the night sky has been known for millennia, its nature
and our place it in and in the universe have only come into focus in the past
century. In this talk we will look at our evolving picture of the Milky Way, our
place in it, and where we fit in among the rest of the known universe.

The Big Picture
December 4 @ 7 pm
If you’ve been with us from the start, you may have notices that we are moving
outward in the cosmos. In this last talk, we will tell the story of how we have
come to our current model of the universe, its origin and future. The past 30
years have seen cosmology progress from a mostly theoretical science to one
with precision measurements possible to validate theories. We’ll talk about this
and some of the interesting current problems.


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