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ECE Seminar Series


ISTeC Distinguished Lecture In conjunction with the Statistics and Physics, Computer Science Department, and Electrical and Computer Engineering Department

Title: Pulsars, Flickers and Cosmic Flashes: The Transient Radio Universe
Speaker: Duncan Lorimer
Affiliation: West Virginia University
Day: Monday, May 4, 2015
Time: 11:00 am - 12:00 pm
Location: Morgan Library Event Hall

Abstract: I will describe a brief history of discovery and some exciting recent developments in the world of pulsars and fast radio bursts. Pulsars, rapidly rotating highly magnetized neutron stars, were discovered in 1967 and continue to surprise and delight astronomers as powerful probes of fundamental physics and astrophysics. Fast radio bursts are millisecond-duration pulses of currently unknown origin that were discovered in 2007. Both pulsars and fast radio bursts have great promise at probing the universe on large scales and in fundamental ways. I will describe the science opportunities these phenomena present, and discuss the challenges and opportunities presented in their discovery.

Bio: Duncan Lorimer is originally from the town of Darlington in the Northeast of England. He got his PhD in Radio Astronomy 1994 from the University of Manchester for his work on pulsar populations in our Galaxy. Following a lectureship at Manchester in 1994-5, he was a postdoctoral fellow at the Max-Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy in Bonn, Germany in 1995-8 and a staff scientist at the Arecibo Observatory in Puerto Rico in 1998-2001. He returned to the UK between 2001-2006 as a Royal Society Research Fellow at Manchester. Since 2006, he's been at WVU where he teaches and carries out research with his students in the Department of Physics and Astronomy. Honors received while at WVU include a Cottrell Scholarship (2009-2012), Outstanding Teaching Awards (2009, 2010) and Woodburn Professorship (2010-2012).