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Astronomy Colloquium
Building stars, planets and the ingredients for life in space
Date: Wednesday, May 3rd
Time: 3:30 pm - 4:30 pm
Place: 4421 Sterling Hall
Speaker: Ewine F. van Dishoeck, Leiden Observatory, Leiden University, the Netherlands
Abstract: Thousands of planets have been discovered around stars other than our
Sun. But how and where are these exo-planets born, and why are they so
different from those in our own solar system? Which ingredients are
available to build them? Thanks to powerful new telescopes, including
the James Webb Space Telescope, astronomers can now zoom in to
planetary construction sites and study their composition. Water and a
surprisingly rich variety of organic materials are found near forming
stars, including simple sugars, ethers, alcohols and hydrocarbons.
How are these molecules made under the extreme conditions in space and
can they be delivered to new planets to form the basis for life
elsewhere in the universe?
Host: Ke Zhang
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