Violent agents of cosmic change

Peter Challis is a big bear of a guy. Sitting in the air-conditioned computer room at the Cerro Tololo Inter-American Observatory headquarters in La Serena, Chile, Pete is wearing his Center for Astrophysics T-shirt for the third day in a row, cargo shorts, and sneakers. He looks like he just stepped off an Ann Arbor Softball diamond. It's evening and the lights of the coastal city scintillate down below. Pete isn't looking. His attention is riveted to his computer screen Pete is making...

Learning to Swim

Minkowski, The AstrophysicalJournal 89, 156(1939). 2 K. M i nkt > wsk i, Pn hlicat io m of the As tro no m ica I Soc iet y of the Pa cific 52,206(1940) 3 The details were kindly provided by Robert N. Turner, Assistant Curator at the New Mexico Museum of Space History, Alama gordo, New Mexico. 4 R P Kirshner, and J. Kwan, The Astrophysical Journal 193, 27 (1974). 1 Planetary nebulae have nothing to do with planets All elements beyond helium are called metals The apparent brightness of stars...

Boomerang

Fluctuations in the microwave background from the BOOMERANG balloon experiment. The measurements map the variations in the microwave background The angular size of the fluetunions teHs the cosmic geometry, which agrees best with a fbt universe in which + S I Courtesy of the BOOMERANG collaboration (Also see color insert figure 11 J. Fluctuations in the microwave background from the BOOMERANG balloon experiment. The measurements map the variations in the microwave background The...

Info

At the Princeton meeting in the summer of 1996T Saul Pcrlmuttcr dropped a bombshell right at the epicenter of cosmology. The supernova evidence accumulated by his group at Lawrence Berkeley Lab favored a universe that was decelerating due to dark matter, with 1 near one. Our high-jzteam didn't have much to say because we didn't have any results. We had methods that we thought were pretty good, we had found some supernovae and we had some data in the pipeline, but we didn't have our own Hubble...

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Cosmic Expansion Astronomy

Figure 5.6 Einstein visits the Mount Wilson Observatory offices. In 1931. Einstein visited the Pasadena offices of the Mount Wilson Observatory. George Ellery Hale, builder of the 100-inch telescope and founder of the observatory, looks down from his portrait in the library. Hubble apparently being patted on the head by Hale) is at the left. Einstein, holding chalk, is in front of the blackboard. Courtesy of The Observatories of the Carnegie Institution of Washington will he the last stronghold...

Epilogue

We've done these calculations in a standard A cold dark matter universe. The energetic young speaker at the front of the Phillips Auditorium at the Center for Astrophysics, Kathryn Johnson, a professor from Wesley an, was setting the stage for presenting her new results on galaxy cannibalism. There were 100 people in the room for the Thursday Astronomy Colloquium, Kathryn had a lot of new results to share, and she wasn't wasting any of her time or theirs by justifying the cosmology she had...

Another way to explode

Curiously, nature has contrived more than one way to destroy a star. Both types of stellar explosion emit comparable amounts of light, so supernova types have been confused from the early days of this subject. SN la come from exploding white dwarfs. But other stars explode by collapsing. The idea that supernovae have their origin in collapsing stars was proposed by Fritz Zwicky and Walter Baade in 1934. As explained by Willy Fowler and Fred Hoylc in I960, stars with eight or more times the mass...