Steinn Sigurðsson

Professor of Astrophysics at Pennsylvania State University, Science Editor at Astrophysical Journal. Icelandic. Herder of Cats.

Introduction to Astrobiology

Last year EANA, the European Astrobiology Network Association put up a series of 18 introductory astrobiology video lectures constituting the AstroBiology Course Lectures: Introduction to Astrobiology Formation of the Solar System Origins of Life: current theories Comets and the origin of life Basic prebiotic chemistry Structures and evolution of proteins Most simple (early) life forms…

The workshop on Massive Black Holes at the Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics continues with today’s session on “Co-evolution of black holes and their host galaxies”. I continue a semi-liveblog of the proceedings. As before, talks are online here – podcast, audio and video options; pdfs of talk slides added as speakers get them in.…

A Universe of Black Holes: V

We are back to “Massive Black Holes” Happy Birthday Alberto! Alberto Sesana (AEI) leads off with “Probing massive black holes with space-based interferometry and pulsar timing” starts with overview of gravitational radiation – characteristic frequencies, amplitudes, timescales Baby Black Holes – up for adoption, get collectible adoption certificates with a picture of your very own…

the Massive Black Holes workshop at KITP continues, with another Black Hole Pairs session Mike Eracleous kicks off: Observational Searches for Close Supermassive Binary Black Holes emission line signatures of close (~ sub-parsec) supermassive binary black holes cf “A Large Systematic Search for Recoiling and Close Supermassive Binary Black Holes” and “Emission Lines as a…

“Massive black hole pairs” is the topic of today’s session at the BHOLES13 workshop at KITP Talks are online here – note that slides of talks show up later as speakers get their act together and send in slides Monica Colpi (Milan) starts the session with Formantion of Binary Black Holes in Galactic Nuclei starts…

and we are back from lunch J. Johnson (LANL) talking about supermassive stars as seeds for supermassive black holes – going to be getting more technical supermassive star has a gas mass ~ 105 solar masses (as oppesed to few hundredish solar masses for standard Pop III stars that could provide low mass seeds) form…

A Universe of Black Holes: I

Visiting lovely KITP for the A Universe of Black Holes programme, and specifically the associated “Massive Black Holes: Birth, Growth and Impact” workshop. As usual the talks will (eventually) be posted on line, both slides and web, but in the mean time I will be semi-transcribing my semi-coherent stream-of-consciousness thoughts on the issues. And we…

EU Science Slam

This is a public service announcement: the EU is running a FameLab like Science Slam EURAXESS Researcher in Motion Science Slam, sponsored by the European Commission. “If you are a researcher currently based in North America (US and Canada), enter the competition by posting a video featuring your science slam on our LinkedIn site, or…

Cyber Wars: liveblog

Ok, straight from cosmology to cybersecurity: the Aspen Institute is running an “Aspen Security Forum” with several days of events. Tonight General Keith Alexander, head of the NSA is doing a forum with NBC’s Pete Williams. I got a ticket and got here early, as the heavens opened up and the lightning flashed. Despite the…

Planck Result Perspective

Simon White Director of Max Planck Institut für Astrophysik giving today’s Physics Colloquium at ACP on the Planck Results Likely to be interesting, hence the semi-liveblog. Starts with description of the collaboration and historical perspective; Penzias and Wilson, COBE and WMAP Cute ESA video showing Planck science Even better ESA video explaining stuff Very good…