I love talking about astronomy and space to as many different audiences as I can, from primary school children to amateur astronomers. I’ve performed short comedy sketches about galaxies and given hour-long presentations about my PhD research. The talks I give most often are detailed below but I’m happy to talk on a range of subjects so please get in touch if you have something in mind.
- Understanding nature’s death ray guns: There is a monster lurking in the centre of some galaxies. Fuelled by matter falling onto a supermassive black hole and powerful enough to outshine a galaxy, these ‘blazars’ have been described as nature’s death ray guns. In this talk I discuss what we know about these blazars, how we know what we know and some of the questions that are still puzzling astronomers today.
- The invisible night sky: Gazing at the night sky with our eyes or telescopes reveals twinkling stars and far away galaxies. But visible light is only a small part of the emission from some of these objects. In this talk I show views of the Universe at other wavelengths, from familiar objects like our Sun to weird and wonderful distant quasars, and explain some of the physics behind them.
- T-4 billion years until almost certain doom: The human race is only 4 billion years away from almost certain doom. At this time, not only will the Sun come to the end of its life, our nearest spiral galaxy neighbour will be preparing to crash into our own Milky Way. In this talk I explain more about these two inevitable astronomical events, with possible sidetracks into some of the other numerous ways that the Universe is trying to kill us.
My upcoming events are listed below, or you can click here for a full list of past and future events.
- 11th August 2017 – Royal Astronomical Society, Burlington House Lates [more info]
I also sometimes present live planetarium shows at the Winchester Science Centre. Any upcoming shows are listed below.