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Clouds in Alien Skies

Friday 6th September 2019 - 7:30pm
Topic: Clouds in Alien Skies
Speaker: Lucyna Chudczer (Programme Manager - Astronomy Australia Ltd)
Venue: Epping Creative Centre - 26 Stanley Road, Epping
Abstract: In our Solar System clouds have been observed on all planets surrounded by even a tenuous atmosphere. They can also form in the atmospheres of cool stars such as brown dwarfs. Clouds are likely to be ubiquitous in the atmospheres of extra solar planets as well and are recognised as an important component in models of planetary climate. They affect the amount of stellar light that filters into planetary atmospheres and have a significant effect on cooling and warming of planets. I will describe the properties of clouds that can be expected in the atmospheres of extra solar planets and will compare them with the examples of clouds on the Solar System planets. I will also discuss observations and measurements that are needed to detect and characterise clouds and hazes on exoplanets.  

Biography: Lucyna Kedziora-Chudczer was born in Poland, where she studied astronomy at the Jagellonian University in Krakow. After she received her Master Degree, she moved to Australia and completed her PhD on the radio variability of Active Galactic Nuclei at the University of Sydney in 1999. At the same year she became the AAO/ATNF Research Fellow at the Anglo Australian Observatory studying polarization properties and monitoring the intraday variable quasars. In 2003 she moved to the University of Sydney, where she was offered a position of the Harry Messel Research Fellow, and continued her work on both the polarization of compact radio sources and properties of our local Galactic Interstellar Medium. During this time, she also taught undergraduate courses and mentored the PhD students.

In 2009 she accepted a Postdoctoral Fellowship at the UNSW in the area of planetary and exo-planetary science. She is a member of the Australian Centre for Astrobiology. Her interests include the spectroscopy and polarimetry observations of exoplanets, as well as the modelling of planetary atmospheres. During her research at the UNSW she was involved in the design and construction of the High Precision Polarimetric Instrument (HIPPI) used at the Anglo Australian Telescope for observations of exoplanets and bright stars. In 2019 she accepted position of the Program Manager at Astronomy Australia Limited. She continues her research in planetary astronomy as an Adjunct Research Fellow at the University of Southern Queensland.

Event Date: 
Friday, 6 September, 2019 - 19:30
Epping Creative Centre, 26 Stanley Road, Epping NSW

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