When doing land-based astronomy you have many issues to overcome. Light pollution is a big problem if you are near cities or towns and it is increasingly harder to find ‘dark sites’ where light pollution doesn’t exist. Our atmosphere also causes problems so we try for high altitudes or put telescopes in space (but that does get expensive!). And then there is temperature. Dr Christian Reichardt from the University of Melbourne’s Astrophysics group is going to be talking about one way of overcoming the temperature problem and the amazing science coming from one of the coldest places on Earth, Antarctica.
Astronomy at 80 below: A tale of astronomy in Antarctica
The cosmic microwave background bears the imprint of the universe just after the Big Bang, and has been a crucial tool in our quest to understand how the Universe began and what its future holds. The pursuit of the cosmic microwave background has driven us to the coldest and driest desert on the planet: the high Antarctic plateau. Over the past two decades, we have built telescopes at the South Pole to study the cosmic microwave background. We will discuss what its like to work at the South Pole, and what we are learning about the Big Bang.
I study the oldest light in the Universe, emitted when the Universe was a minuscule 0.003% of its current age. From this snapshot of the Universe in its infancy, we can learn more about what happened during the Big Bang, what the Universe is made of and how the Universe is evolving.
Join Christian for a fascinating insight into the science of the beginning of the Universe happening at the South Pole. He will be speaking in the Scienceworks Energy Lab on the Lower Ground Floor.
See the official Scienceworks What’s On page for further details and ticket sales. Tickets are limited, so get in quick!