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Our Accidental Universe
Our Accidental Universe

Mon, 22 Apr

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Queen's House

Our Accidental Universe

by Professor Chris Lintott The BBC presenter of 'Sky at Night', and Gresham Professor of Astronomy, Chris Lintott, takes us on an astonishing tour of bizarre accidents, big characters, and human error to tell the story of some of the most important astronomical events of the past hundred years.

Time & Location

22 Apr 2024, 19:15 – 21:00

Queen's House, Romney Rd, London SE10 9NF, UK

About the Event

The BBC presenter of 'Sky at Night', and Gresham Professor of Astronomy, Chris Lintott, takes us on an astonishing tour of bizarre accidents, big characters, and human error to tell the story of some of the most important astronomical events of the past hundred years.

  • Our first views of the earliest galaxies were brought to us by the Hubble Space Telescope when it was pointed at absolutely nothing.
  • The ice-covered Enceladus, one of Saturn's nearly one hundred moons, was revealed as a possible habitat for life after a by-chance fly by of NASA's Cassini probe on a mission elsewhere.
  • Pulsars, the spectacular remnants of long-dead massive stars, were discovered as 'scruff' in the data for measurements of the twinkling of possible radio stars.  

As new telescopes are built on mountaintops and in deserts around the world, aiming to transform our view of the universe once more, Chris Lintott shows us that keeping an open mind will benefit us all - whatever might still be out there for us to find.

Biography

Chris Lintott is a Professor of Astrophysics at the University of Oxford, where his research ranges from understanding how galaxies form and evolve, to predicting the properties of visiting interstellar asteroids. He is Principal Investigator of the Zooniverse citizen science platform, which provides opportunities for anyone to contribute to scientific research, and which was the topic of his first book, 'The Crowd and the Cosmos'. Lintott is best known as presenter of the BBC's long-running Sky at Night program, and as an accomplished lecturer and performer in venues from music festivals to planetaria. In 2023, he was appointed the 39th Gresham Professor of Astronomy, a post that dates back to the 16th century. Away from work, he cooks, plays real tennis and spends time with a rescued lurcher, Mr Max, with whom he presents the Dog Stars podcast.

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