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Astronomy Colloquium
Knitting Together a New 3D View of our "Milky Way Galaxy".
Date: Thursday, September 24th
Time: 3:45 pm - 5:30 pm
Place: Zoom meeting(see Abstract ) Coffee and tea 3:30 pm, Talk 3:45 PM
Speaker: Catherine Zucker, Harvard CfA
Abstract: Until recently, much of our understanding of the 3D structure of our Milky Way was based on 2D observations of stars and dust, or spectral-line observations of gas. Distance measurements needed to turn the 2D sky into a 3D physical picture of the stars and interstellar clouds that form them were few and far between. In this talk, I will discuss how the rise of Gaia and large photometric surveys — in combination with new data science and visualization techniques — are quickly changing the landscape. In particular, I will show how 3D dust maps have received a huge distance resolution boost from Gaia, and how 3D dust can be “knitted” together with velocity information from gas and young stars to render new 3D spatial-kinematic views of our solar neighborhood, on scales of individual clouds to swaths of spiral arms. On small scales, I will present a new analysis of the 3D spatial topologies of local molecular clouds. And on large scales, I will show how many of these clouds are connected into a 2.7-kpc-long undulating structure called the Radcliffe Wave, which redefines our understanding of the Local Arm nearby.
Zoom Link:

Meeting ID: 885 1389 6776

Passcode: 713070
Host: Robert Benjamin, UW Astronomy Department
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