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Exoplanets topic of April astronomy lecture

April 11, 2013

Jennifer Patience, associate professor in the School of Earth and Space Exploration, will talk about exoplanets as part of ASU’s Astronomy Public Lecture Series.

The lecture titled “Exoplanets – Exploring the Diversity of Other Worlds,” will be held at 7:30 p.m., April 12, in the Marston Exploration Theatre. It is the last lecture of the semester.

Detecting, characterizing, and modeling extrasolar planets are among the fastest-growing and most exciting fields in current international astrophysics research. Thus far, over 800 exoplanets have been discovered and the study of their surprisingly diverse properties has both challenged and revolutionized the understanding of planet formation and helped place the Solar System in a broader context. The results of planet search programs have revealed planetary systems very different from the Solar System – some with giant Jupiters forever locked with one hemisphere facing the host star, others with multiple Jovian planets in delicately-balanced eccentric orbits, and still others with mere rubble orbiting the compact remnants of exploded stars.

Come learn about some of the intriguing planetary systems orbiting other stars and find out about some future directions in this exciting area of astronomy.

After the lecture, explore the new interactive displays in Interdisciplinary Science and Technology Building IV (ISTB 4), which is located at the corner of McAllister and Terrace on the Tempe campus. Students will be around to answer questions about astronomy and the exhibits.

The ASU Astronomy Public Lecture Series, created by the astronomy graduate students, in conjunction with the ASU Astronomy Club occurs once a month.

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The School of Earth and Space Exploration is an academic unit of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.