ReadingAS monthly meeting May 18th

Meeting details: Saturday May 18 2013 at 7.00pm.
Venue: St Peters Church Hall, Church Rd. Earley, Reading, RG6 1EY
GPS:  51.443891°  -0.928940°

Dr Rhodri Evans (Cardiff University)

Astronomy from B747.

In fact a highly modified 747 owned by NASA.

It is well known that the light spectrum we see at the surface is the part which is allowed through by the Earth’s atmosphere. Astronomy is hindered because our protective atmosphere cuts out the vast majority of the electro-magnetic spectrum. If astronomers can get above 10 kms they have access to infra-red spectrum, a height easily achieved for long periods in modern transport aeroplanes.

Here’s a diagram from Stony Brook website indicating the small extent of the visible spectrum that reaches the ground.

atm_trans

The guest speaker, Rhodri, says, “My main area of research is extra-galactic astronomy. For the past 16 years I have been involved in airborne astronomy, and am part of the team building the facility far-infrared camera for SOFIA. I also do research in star-formation and cosmology. I am a regular contributor to TV, radio and public lectures. I also do a blog – which is sometimes about astronomy. You can find out more about me on my Facebook page.”

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