Northwestern Events Calendar


Physics and Astronomy Brown Bag Lunch Seminar Series: Kerry Paterson and Emily Leiner

When: Wednesday, October 9, 2019
12:00 PM - 1:00 PM Central

Where: Technological Institute, F160, 2145 Sheridan Road, Evanston, IL 60208 map it

Audience: Faculty/Staff - Student - Post Docs/Docs - Graduate Students

Contact: Bud Robinson   (847) 491-3644

Group: Physics and Astronomy Brown Bag Lunch Seminars

Category: Academic


Rapid follow-up of neutron star mergers and short GRBs

Kerry Paterson, Postdoctoral Associate, CIERA

Short Gamma-Ray bursts (SGRBs) are highly energetic, relativistic explosions with prompt gamma-ray emission lasting <2 sec, followed by an optical/IR afterglow. The afterglow allows us to localize the position of the SGRB and the associated host galaxy. With the most favored progenitor scenario for these SGRBs being neutron star (NS) mergers, supported by the detection of a weak SGRB accompanying the NS-NS merger GW170817, SGRBs play an important role in understanding binary evolution and the physics of NS mergers. I will discuss 1) the follow up of SGRBs to constrain the afterglow emission and what the associated host galaxy properties can tell us, and 2) a new project SAGUARO, which will facilitate the rapid identification and follow-up of GW events.


Sub-subgiant Stars: A Mystery in Binary Stellar Evolution

Emily Leiner, NSF Astronomy and Astrophysics postdoc, CIERA

In the color-magnitude diagrams of open and globular clusters, sub-subgiant stars are found fainter and/or redder than the subgiant branch, a region that is not populated by any standard stellar evolution models. These red, under-luminous stars are also often X-ray sources or photometric variables. Where radial velocities are available, they reveal close binary companions in orbits of less than 20 days. I will review the observations of sub-subgiants in clusters and in the field, and discuss what these stellar oddities might teach us about the non-standard evolutionary paths taken by binary stars. 

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