CONTACT: David F. Salisbury, News Service (650) 725-1944;
Public lecture on future of astronomical research
"Astronomical Research in the 21st Century: Questions and Instruments" will be the subject of the Robert Hofstadter Memorial Lecture at 8 p.m. Monday, March 30, in the Gates Building, Conference Room B01.
The free public lecture will be delivered by Riccardo Giacconi, director general of the European Southern Observatory, an intergovernmental organization for astronomical research. One of the founders of X-ray astronomy, Giacconi will recount how the ability to view the universe in wavelengths beyond the visible led to new discoveries and fundamentally changed the direction of astronomical research in the 1960s and '70s.
He also will discuss how the spectacular images being produced today by the Hubble Space Telescope and the ground-based Keck telescopes in Hawaii are affecting the course of modern astrophysics. He will show how these instruments, and new facilities being planned in the near future, are increasingly allowing scientists to address questions of origins: origins of the structure of the universe, of galaxies, stars, planets, even life itself.
In addition, Giacconi will deliver a colloquium on "The European Very Large Telescope" at 4 p.m. Tuesday, March 31, in Building 420, room 040. His subject will be a new telescope currently under construction in South America.
For more information call 723-4347.
By David F. Salisbury