OMSI Science Pub, Hillsboro: The Lives (and Deaths) of Star Clusters


Science Pub Hillsboro





Nasty, Brutish and Short:

The Lives (and Deaths) of Star Clusters in the Milky Way

with Kevin Covey, PhD, assistant astronomer at Lowell Observatory

Star clusters are some the most beautiful objects in our night sky, but they are also among the most fragile: most star clusters are destroyed shortly after they form, dissipating their stars throughout the Milky Way. Since most stars and planets form within these young clusters, the processes that destroy these clusters could strongly influence the structure and very survival of planetary systems. Indeed, the outer regions of our own solar system may still show scars today tracing back to its early escape from its original birth cluster.

In this talk, astronomer Kevin Covey will explain how star clusters form, and identify the leading suspects for causing their untimely demise. Kevin will describe a ‘forensic study’ he and his colleagues are conducting of two young clusters forming in the constellation of Perseus. By understanding the properties of these young clusters, which share a common birthplace but occupy different stages along a cluster's evolutionary path, Dr. Covey and his colleagues are uncovering new clues that may overturn previous theories of the life and death of young clusters.

Kevin Covey received his PhD in Astronomy from the University of Washington, and was then awarded NASA’s prestigious Spitzer and Hubble Postdoctoral Fellowships to support his research at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics and Cornell University. He is continuing his research at Lowell Observatory, where he uses telescopes around the world -- and orbiting above it! -- to observe and study the formation and evolution of stars and stellar clusters. When not trapped behind a telescope mirror or computer screen, Kevin enjoys recreational cycling and cheering for the Portland Trailblazers.

Science Pub Hillsboro is a monthly event open to anyone aged 21+ (or minor with adult). No RSVP or scientific background required. Just bring your curiosity, sense of humor, and appetite for food, drinks, and knowledge!

$5.00 suggested cover charge.

Tell your friends. We hope to see you there!

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  • Amy M.

    Hi - I just saw the note about Jeanne's ankle - I am hosting this event throught the PDX 45 +/- group. So, I will be there. You are welcome to come sit with us...after all it is Meetup! I will be wearing a Meetup Name Tag with my name on it. I am blonde/short and normally wearing a smile. :)I will be up by the chairs in lobby before the theatre food counter by 6:15. You can also call/text me at[masked]

    June 24, 2013

  • Jeanne

    My ankle is acting up, so I won't be able to host this event. Craig from FFFF, and Amy from PDX Singles will be there to host the 3-groups together.

    June 24, 2013

  • Jennifer

    This sounds awesome! I will pretend I'm Doctor Who.

    June 18, 2013

  • Amanda

    Darn - last minute trip out of town and have to miss this!

    June 18, 2013

  • Teresa Fugate O.

    Sounds interesting

    June 7, 2013

  • LauraH

    I have to work that night :( I'd love to have attended.

    May 18, 2013

  • Satori

    If anyone has any interesting resources about astronomy / black holes that would be greatly appreciated! Please email me. Thanks!

    May 18, 2013

46 went

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