Wednesday 10 June; Delft, Imke de Pater 'Fascinating objects in our Solar System'



Location: Zaal E 

Time: 16.00 hrs

Imke de Pater from University of California in Berkeley will talk on "Fascinating objects in our Solar System". 

Imke de Pater (PhD Leiden 1980) is a Professor at the University of California in Berkeley. She is well known for her work on Jupiter's synchrotron radiation, for which she received the URSI John Howard Dellinger Gold Medal in Aug. 1984. She led a worldwide campaign observing Jupiter's radio emissions during the impact of comet D/Shoemaker-Levy 9 with Jupiter in 1994. This work has lead to a detailed investigation of the effects of impacts on the magnetospheric environment of the planet. She is one the authors of: PLANETARY SCIENCES (Imke de Pater and Jack J. Lissauer), Cambridge University Press 2001. She is currently a visiting professor at Delft.

Fascinating objects in our Solar System

Our Solar System is comprised of bodies varying in size from the giant planet Jupiter, 12 times larger than our Earth, down to bodies less than a few km in size, and further down to microscopically small dust grains. The planets and their satellites are now known to us as individual worlds, some of which show similarities to Earth (e.g., Titan, Mars), others exhibit such extreme volcanism that even the largest volcanoes on Earth are dwarfed in comparison (Io, Enceladus). The giant planets are surrounded by rings, systems which are unique to each planet. In these systems we observe details that help us understand the physical processes in the early solar nebula that led to planet formation 4.5 billion years ago, and still now is operational in disks around other stars. Once in a while comets approach the Sun and exhibit fantastic displays. Remote observations and in situ analysis of cometary gases and dust grains help us understand the early epoch of planet formation in our Solar System.

In this talk I will give a "tour through our Solar System". Using our own observations from the 10-m Keck telescope, together with HST and spacecraft data, I will give an up-to-date picture of several of the most fascinating objects therein. In addition, I will mention how future projects, such as e.g., ALMA, may help advance our current understanding of some of these bodies.