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The next PAS meeting is Friday September 12, 2014

7:30 pm, Room 5015, Foothill College

Featuring Dr. Robert Feldmann

"Frontiers of Galaxy Evolution Simulations - Successes, Failures, Challenges"

“Galaxies and many of their properties evolve over cosmic history: Which processes determine their sizes, regulate their star formation rates, or shape their morphology? In fact, nobody really knows. However, compared with just 10 years ago, we are now much closer to answering those questions. This remarkable development is largely a result of two major advances. First, with the advent of large scale, digital galaxy surveys the quantitative analysis of millions of galaxies became possible -- a development that is still revolutionizing our understanding of galaxy evolution. Secondly, the continuous increase in computing power enables astrophysicists, like myself, to develop and evaluate increasingly sophisticated theoretical models. In my work, I often rely on state-of-the-art hydrodynamics and gravity solvers such as the SPH-code GASOLINE or the AMR-code ART to study how galaxies evolve in a cosmological setting. In my presentation, I will show through video simulations how well current physics is able to predict galaxy evolution, and what the shortcomings seem to be.

Numerical simulations have proven to be an essential tool for the study of galaxies. I will review the early successes and failures of numerical methods and shed light on the inner workings of simulations. I will demonstrate their wide applicability by studying selected scientific problems in the field of galaxy evolution. Finally, I will highlight current challenges faced by the numerical approach and discuss how they may be overcome.”

Dr Feldmann is a post-doctoral researcher at the University of California, Berkeley. He obtained his PhD at the ETH Zurich (Switzerland) in 2009 for studying the evolution of massive galaxies in the early Universe with the help of numerical simulations. From 2009 to 2012 he worked as Research Associate at the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory, near Chicago, investigating the interstellar medium in galaxies from a theoretical perspective. Dr Feldmann arrived at UC Berkeley in 2012 and since then has continued his numerical work on the evolution of galaxies.

Next Speaker:  Landon Curt Noll on October 10, speaking on recent meteor searches in Antarctica.

 Location: Foothill College room 5015, next to Parking Lot 5
Bring $3 for a parking permit



The Peninsula Astronomical Society is a group of some 200 Bay Area astronomy enthusiasts of all ages and backgrounds. Some members are professionally trained in astronomy, others are just starting and have never looked through a telescope before. One thing that we all have in common is an interest in the sky.

The PAS holds meetings on the second Friday of each month at 7:30 pm on the campus of Foothill College in Los Altos Hills, CA (between San Jose and Palo Alto).  The meetings are usually held in Room 5015, next to Parking Lot 5 (see map). Each meeting features a speaker (or speakers) bringing us up to date on different topics in astronomy. The public is welcome to attend these meetings; there is no charge to attend.  Note, however, that there is a $3 charge for parking - visitor parking permits are available from the machines in the parking lots.  Please do not park in spaces marked "Staff" - you will be ticketed!

As part of its commitment to bringing astronomy to the public, the Peninsula Astronomical Society operates the Foothill College Observatory (click here for more information). The Observatory is staffed by members of the society who volunteer to conduct the regularly scheduled public programs.

In addition to operating the Foothill Observatory, the PAS has its own observatory in the nearby Santa Cruz Mountains. This location has AC power and room for members to set up their own telescopes at our monthly star parties. This site is also the home of the society's 12" telescope, available for member use after a checkout.

For informaton about membership in the PAS, click here.



PAS Logo clothing and other cool items are available at Cafe Press - click on the T-shirt:

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