Khamis, 19 Februari 2009

You Are Made of Star Stuff

Where did the atoms that make up our bodies come from originally?
Where did gold come from originally?
The chemical elements that are essential for life came from stars and particularly from the death of stars.
This talk will show that we are indeed made of star.
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Professor S Jocelyn Bell Burnell Dame
Jocelyn Bell Burnell is an astrophysicist who as a postgraduate student, discovered the first radio pulsars with her thesis advisor Antony Hewish, for which he won a Nobel Prize. She graduated from the University of Glasgow with a B.Sc Physics in 1965 and received her Ph.D from New Hall (renamed Murray Edwards College) of the University of Cambridge in 1969. At Cambridge, she worked with Hewish and others to construct a radio telescope for using interplanetary scintillation to study quasars, which had recently been discovered (interplanetary scintillation allows compact sources to be distinguished from extended ones). Detecting a bit of "scruff" on her chart recorder papers that tracked across the sky with the stars, Bell Burnell found that the signal was regularly pulsing, about once each second. Temporarily dubbed "Little Green Man 1" the source (now known as PSR B1919+21) was eventually identified as a rapidly rotating neutron star. After finishing her PhD, Bell Burnell worked at the University of Southampton (1968-73), University College London (1974-82) and the Royal Observatory, Edinburgh (1982-91). In addition, from 1973 to 1987 she was also a tutor, consultant, examiner and lecturer for the Open University. In 1991 she was appointed Professor of Physics at the Open University, a position she held for ten years. She was also a visiting professor at Princeton University. Before retiring Bell Burnell was Dean of Science at the University of Bath between 2001 and 2004,and was President of the Royal Astronomical Society between 2002 and 2004. She is currently Visiting Professor of Astrophysics at the University of Oxford and a Fellow of Mansfield College.She is the current President of the Institute of Physics. In June 2007, she was awarded a DBE, the equivalent to a male knighthood.

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