ROE Workshop 2009

Public Lecture

14 September 2009 at 19.30

Cosmic Dawn: The Search for the First Galaxies

Richard S Ellis FRS,
California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, USA

The final frontier in our understanding of cosmic history is the search for the first celestial objects which began to shine after an extended period of darkness astronomers call the "Dark Ages". Was this a glorious moment of brilliance or did it occur gradually over many hundreds of millions of years? And were the first sources brilliant and few, or feeble and numerous? Professor Ellis will describe our very limited understanding of this early phase of history and why its observation is important. His talk will highlight recent progress made in observing this era with the various ground and space-based telescopes some using the additional power of foreground `gravitational lenses' which boost faint signals emerging from the distant past.

Richard Ellis is a Welshman by birth. He graduated at Oxford University before becoming a professor at Durham University and later Cambridge University. At Cambridge, he was Director of the Institute of Astronomy from 1994 to 1999. In 1999 he moved to Caltech to participate in the proposed Thirty Meter Telescope, a giant successor to Keck, now in the detailed design phase. He was Director of Caltech Optical Observatories from 2000 to 2005 and has published extensively in the areas of faint galaxy evolution as well as cosmological studies utilizing distant supernovae and gravitational lensing.

Surgeons' Hall Complex
Nicolson St
Edinburgh, EH8
+44 (0)131 527 3434

Tickets £3, Concessions £2. on sale at The Hub