SLAS Regular Meeting
Friday, December 19
The Search For Planets Of Alien Suns
One of the most significant scientific discoveries ever made happened
in the late twentieth century: the detection of planets in orbit
around other stars.
Less than two decades later, about 300 extra-solar planets, or ?exoplanets?
have been found. Most are exotic ? planets Jupiter-sized but
orbiting very close to
their parent stars. One has now been directly photographed ? the other three
hundred have been detected indirectly. Mr. Heuermann will discuss how these
planets have been found and what they might look like. He will
also talk about the prospects
for finding Earth-like planets in the near future. He will use some excerpts
from The Teaching Company?s Understanding the Universe video course, taught
by Professor Alex Fillipenko of the University of California,
Rich Heuermann is the Outreach Program Coordinator of the NASA
Missouri Space Grant Consortium at Washington University. He
is also an amateur astronomer
and long-time member of the Saint Louis Astronomical Society.