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Dr. Fiona and the Universe at Caltech’s Beckman Auditorium on Dec. 4

The Universe is a vast expanse of nothingness. Or is it?

Published on Wednesday, November 27, 2013 | 5:27 pm
Dr. Fiona Harrison. Photo by

Dr. Fiona A. Harrison will explain the Universe at Caltech’s Beckman Auditorium in her talk, Wednesday, December 4, “From Spinning Black Holes to Exploding Stars: A New View of the Energetic Universe.”

Harrison, a Colorado native, is the principal investigator for Caltech’s NuSTAR (nuclear spectroscopic telescope array) Team. Graduated Magna Cum Laude at Dartmouth College with an A.B. in physics, she also received her Ph.D. in physics from U.C. Berkeley. Harrison joined the Caltech faculty in 1996 as an Assistant Professor, and in 2005 was promoted to Professor of Physics and Astronomy.

Harrison’s talk will touch on the technological advances over the last decades, especially NASA’s newest astrophysics mission, NuStar, that peers deep into the high-energy X-ray sky. Exploring the densest, hottest regions in the Universe, NuStar helps us understand how black holes grow, to study the bizarre physics that happens near the strongest known cosmic magnets, and to observe the radioactive glow of the debris of exploded stars.

As Dr. Harrison will explain, the Universe is indeed a vast expanse, but far from empty.

Part of the Earnest C. Watson Lecture Series, the talk will start at 8:00 p.m. Admission is free.

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