University of Minnesota

Karlis Kaufmanis Lecture Series

Karlis Kaufmanis Lecture Series

Recent Lecture

The Kaufmanis Lecture has been CANCELED due to the weather. The lecture will be rescheduled for fall 2019. We apologize for any inconvenience and look forward to seeing you in the fall. If you have questions, contact Andrea Stronghart at or 612-624-7053.

Cosmic Gold: Neutron Star Mergers, Gravitational Waves, and the Origin of the Elements

Dr. Eliot Quataert
UC Berkeley

Thursday, April 11, 2019, 7:00pm
McNamara Alumni Center
200 Oak Street SE, Minneapolis

Scientists have recently developed a new way to `see' the universe, using gravitational waves predicted by Einstein nearly a century ago. These waves can teach us about some of the most exotic objects known, including dead stars known as black holes and neutron stars. Remarkably, they have also helped solve a longstanding puzzle about where in the Universe some of the elements we know and love here on Earth are produced, including uranium, platinum, and even gold. Eliot Quataert will describe the exciting and remarkable new results coming out of our first steps into this new era.

Past Lectures

2019    Dr. Quataert, Berkeley
Cosmic Gold: Neutron Star Mergers, Gravitational Waves, and the Origin of the Elements
2018    Dr. Kaspi, McGill University
Astronomy's Newest Extragalactic Mystery: Fast Radio Bursts!
2016    Dr. Adam Riess, Johns Hopkins University
Supernovae and the Discovery of the Accelerating Universe
2012    Dr. Michael Brown, Caltech
How I Killed Pluto and Why It Had It Coming
2009    Dr. Alex Filippenko, University of California, Berkeley
Dark Energy and the Runaway Universe
2005    Dr. Carolyn Porco, Space Science Institute
2004    Dr. Jill Tarter, SETI
2001    Dr. Kirpal Nandra, Universities Space Research Association
2000    Dr. Robert Kirshner, Harvard University
1999    Dr. Andrea Ghez, University of California, Los Angeles
1997    Dr. Geoff Marcy, University of California, Berkeley
1992    Dr. Barbara Smuts, Psychology and Anthropology, University of Michigan
1991    Dr. Robert Ballard, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute
1990    Dr. Clyde Tombaugh, New Mexico State University (the discoverer of Pluto)
1989    Dr. John Horner, curator of paleontology at the Museum of the Rockies
1987    Dr. George "Pinky" Nelson, astronaut

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