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Radio Supernovae: CSI – Circum-Stellar Investigations with Dr Chris Stockdale, Marquette University USA


Friday 30 March 2012 - 8:00pm
Topic: Radio Supernovae: CSI – Circum-Stellar Investigations
Speaker: Dr Chris Stockdale, Marquette University USA
Venue: Epping Creative Centre - 26 Stanley Road, Epping
Abstract: Core collapse supernova events play a critical role in the chemical enrichment of our Universe and produce many of the critical elements needed for life to form on other planets. The stars that produce these events comprise less than a tenth of one percent of star in a typical galaxy and have lifetimes shorter than ten million years, making them very rare events in a galaxy like our Milky Way.

To explore the evolution of these massive stars and how they play a role in forming new stars, we must look beyond our own galaxy, typically 10-100 million light years away. At these distances, it is practically impossible to predict which stars will explode until they have already done so. However, after the explosion, there is sometimes radio and X-ray emission produced as the supernova blast wave over runs the stellar winds shed by the star in the thousands of years prior to its death.

I will present a summary of how astronomers at the Australian Telescope Compact Array and the Very Large Array use this radio emission to constrain and determine the pre-explosion evolution and environment of these massive supernova progenitor stars, as young as a few months and as old as seventy-five years after the supernova explosion.

Biography: I am actively engaged, as a co-investigator, in an international collaboration that has been monitoring radio and X-ray emission from extragalactic supernovae (SNe) for over 20 years. I have the primary responsibility for planning and executing VLA radio observations and conducting the corresponding data analysis. In the course of the next five years, I will assume the leadership of the now 25-year-old VLA SN project and further develop our nearby spiral galaxy observing project. These studies constitute the most comprehensive program to date that studies radio SNe as they transition from the explosion of the progenitor stars into supernova remnants


Event Date: 
Friday, 30 March, 2012 - 20:00

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