AAC Monthly Meeting - October 2021

  • 12 Oct 2021
  • 7:00 PM - 9:00 PM
  • Online webinar using ZOOM


Registration is closed


7:00 - 7:15 General Meeting & Announcements
7:15 - 7:30 Short topic presentation by a club member
7:30 - Public Presentation


Dr. S. George Djorgovski

Professor of Astronomy and Data Science

Director, Center for Data Driven Discovery

California Institute of Technology

Topic: Astronomy, Big Data, and the Virtual Observatory


The field of Astronomy is challenged with finding new methods to analyze large datasets and extract new discoveries. Dr. Djorgovski will talk about leading edge developments in Astroinformatics and opportunities for advancement of our knowledge of the universe.

About the Speaker:

Dr. Djorgovski is an astrophysicist who earned his PhD in Astronomy from U.C. Berkely in 1985. He was a Harvard Junior Fellow until 1987 when he joined the faculty at the California Institute of Technology. His research is widely published and recognized professionally. He has been honored with numerous awards including Fellow of the American Association for Advancement of Science.

Below he is quoted from his Caltech webpage-


“Computational, data-intensive science (e-Science), development of cyber-infrastructure, the roles of computation in knowledge discovery, Astroinformatics, Virtual Observatory, large digital sky surveys, data-mining, visualization, and exploration.  Extragalactic astronomy, cosmology, galaxy formation, fundamental properties of galaxies, g-ray bursts, quasars, blazars, radio galaxies, gravitational lenses, globular star clusters, early structure evolution, cosmological tests, dark energy, exploration of the time domain.

I have worked on a broad variety of topics, including structure and dynamics of globular clusters, fundamental properties of galaxies and their evolution, gamma-ray bursts, early phases of galaxy and structure formation, distant quasars, dark energy, etc.

More recently, I have been concentrating on large digital sky surveys and Virtual Observatory, and how these large and complex data sets can be used to explore systematically the observable parameter space, and possibly even discover new types of astrophysical objects and phenomena. I am currently focusing on synoptic sky surveys, where large areas of the sky are imaged repeatedly, looking for highly variable sources and transient events. Their follow-up and interpretation pose many interesting challenges and scientific opportunities.

About a half of my time is spent on the development of computational, mostly data-driven science, beyond astronomy proper. Broadly speaking, I am interested in the ways in which computational and information technology changes the ways we study and understand the world around us. This ongoing revolution is changing all of the science and scholarship, along with nearly every other aspect of modern society. As all fields of sciences face the challenges of an exponential growth of data volumes and complexity, and extraction of knowledge and understanding from the data, we are essentially forging new, general tools for the scientific methodology in the 21st century.

I enjoy working with undergraduate and graduate students, postdocs, and other junior scientists, and have many collaborators world-wide. I appreciate self-motivated, enthusiastic people with a real passion for research.”

Interesting fact- The asteroid 24421 Djorgovski is named after him

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