Next presentation will be on Wednesday 23 October 2019
Cosmology & Astrophysics Discussion Group:
We usually meet on the 1st Wednesday each month from 8pm to 10:00pm at the ASV Lodge to discuss a Cosmology topic of the month, which includes a question and answer session around the table. (Topic is listed on Website week before meeting)
Members of all levels are welcome to attend and are encouraged to ask questions (if they wish).
Wednesday 4th September 2019 - “The Nature of Time” - presented by Bruno Zielke (0402 047 860)
Wednesday 2nd October 2019 - “Rocket Engines for Star Travel” & “The 3 Body Problem”
Wednesday 6th November 2019
Wednesday 4th December 2019
Wednesday 8th January 2020 - (note: 2nd Wednesday)
Wednesday 5th February 2020
Wednesday 4th March 2020
Wednesday 1st April 2020
Wednesday 6th May 2020
Wednesday 3rd June 2020
Wednesday 1st July 2020
Wednesday 5th August 2020
Wednesday 2nd September 2020
Wednesday 7th October 2020
Wednesday 4th November 2020
Wednesday 2nd December 2020
Wednesday 6th January 2021
Topics for discussion generally are chosen from the following:
The Origin & Evolution of the Universe (The Big Bang, The Early Universe, The Expansion of the Universe & The Density of Matter in the Universe)
Formation & Structure of - Stars, Solar Systems , Our Solar System, Kuiper Belt Objects & Oort Cloud, Galaxies, Black Holes & Neutron Stars, Quasars & Super-Novae
Is there life elsewhere in Universe? Extra-solar Planets, The Drake Equation, Possible Life in our Solar System, The Formation & Evolution of Life on Earth & Mass Extinctions (Cosmic Impacts)
The discusion topics are based on published Scientific & Astronomical articles, both magazine & digital sources. They are descriptive in approach. No Formulas!
Members can receive info on topic by email by sending me their email address (to the above address).
The Five Ages of the Universe (Inside the Physics of Eternity) by Fred Adams & Greg Laughlin. Free Press 1999. Discusses the Evolution of the Universe from the Big Bang to its Conclusion. Book is a good read even for someone with a modest knowledge of Cosmology.
Just Six Numbers (The Deep Forces that Shape the Universe) by (Sir) Martin Rees. Science Masters 2001. Sir Martin is Astronomer Royal and Professor of Astronomy at Cambridge. In this book he discuss the forces that shape our Universe and enable life.
The Last Three Minutes by Paul Davies. Science Masters 1994. Paul lives in Australia and is the author of many books. In this book, he discusses the fate of the Universe from beginning to end. 11 years is a long time in Cosmology (research), and the book discusses some concepts which today are not considered likely - such as The Big Crunch, but it is still good for background.
About Time (Einstein's Unfinished Revolution) by Paul Davies. Viking 1995. Covers aspects of Time in Relativity, Quantum Mechanics & Cosmology. Discusses the "Arrow of Time", Black Holes and even how humans perceive time.
The Hidden Reality by Brian Greene. Vintage 2011. This is the 3rd book by Greene, which is more readable than his first 2. This book tackles all the different theories of Multiple Universes. It is a fascinating, and head spinning read.
The Elegant Universe by Brian Greene. Vintage 1999. Considered the "bible" on String Theory, the theory which is considered the best candidate to "unite" Modern Physics. It is a difficult book for all but the experienced to read. The early chapters cover Relativity & Quantum Mechanics. It has also been released on Video, which is worth a look as it animates the illustrations in the book.
The Fabric of the Cosmos by Brian Greene Penguin Popular Science 2004 2nd book by Greene covers similar content to first book but has particular emphasis on the spacetime and cosmology. Includes discussion on how our perception of time & space has changed as physical theory has changed
The Hidden Reality by Brian Greene Vintage 2011 Latest book by Greene looks at at the many different theories of Parallel Universes. It refers back to his earlier books in places.
The Magic Furnace The Search for the Origins of Atoms by Marcus Chown Random House 1999 Follows the journey of discovery finding out what atoms are and what they are made of and how they are made in Stars. Book is very easy to read even if reader has little scientific knowledge.
A Brief History of Time (From the Big Bang to Black Holes) by Stephen W. Hawking 1988 + revised edition 1998 A classic on Time, The Universe and Black Holes, from the leading authority on Black Holes.
Extreme Cosmos by Brian Gaensler University of New South Wales 2011 Easy and fun book to read, looks at range of extremes in the Universe of temperature, light, time, size, speed, mass, sound, electricity & magnetism, gravity & density