AAC Monthly Meeting

  • 12 Jul 2022
  • 7:00 PM - 9:00 PM
  • Kika Silva Pla Planetarium & Zoom

Registration


Register

Agenda:

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

7:30 - 7:45 Refreshment break

7:45 - Public Presentation


Speaker:

Dr. Paul Sell

Lecturer

University of Florida Astronomy Department

Topic: Binary Stars

Abstract: 

Binary stellar systems are key tools for several areas of Astrophysics: star-formation processes, the late stages of stellar evolution, compact object formation, and compact object mergers. Aside from the direct observation of photometric or spectroscopic binary stars in our Galaxy, the most efficient probe of binary stellar systems is the observation of the X-ray emitting phase of interacting binaries. Additionally, studies of X-ray binaries provide critical information on the behavior of matter at extreme gravitational and/or magnetic fields. Understanding these processes is fundamental to modern astrophysics and has been the driver of multiple theoretical and observational studies.

About the Speaker:

Dr. Sell earned his B.Sc. in Physics with a concentration in Astrophysics from the University of Toledo in 2007 and then his Ph.D. in Astronomy in 2013 at the University of Wisconsin-Madison under the supervision of Sebastian Heinz. For his postdoctoral work, he first moved to Texas Tech University to continue his research and taught introductory astronomy. Finally, he moved to the University of Crete, Greece for a second postdoctoral research opportunity before joining the faculty at the University of Florida in 2019. His areas of expertise include Optical and X-ray observations of X-ray binaries and starburst galaxies. While working hard to stay active in his research, his passion and primary responsibility as a Lecturer is teaching astronomy. He uses many education-research-inspired ideas to enhance student experiences and improve learning outcomes, many of them he gleaned as he earned a teaching certificate through the Delta program at UW-Madison.   

Research Interests

Dr. Sell’s research interests extend across many astronomical size scales, from the size of the solar system to galaxy-wide.  He examines galactic population characteristics of the most extreme stellar remnants, neutron stars and black holes, and how they influence the local interstellar medium through powerful radiation and outflows.  He also studies highly disruptive and dissipative galaxy mergers that, through feedback, drive shockwaves into the intergalactic medium. This all helps us better understand how galaxies and their stellar populations are linked and evolve through cosmic time.

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