Prof Derk Smits will take you on a whirlwind tour from the Earth into the depths of space. We start in our Solar System which consists of the Sun, planets, moons, comets and asteroids, many of which have been explored by satellites and robotic vehicles. From these visits we have gleaned an enormous amount of information about the environments and evolutionary history of these objects.
Our Sun is a typical star in the Milky Way, our home galaxy. Stars are continually being born, evolve through various stages and then die, some quietly without a whimper, while others can end their lives in catastrophic explosions. All these stages in the life of stars can be seen in our Galaxy using telescopes operating not only in the optical, but from radio up to x-ray wavelengths.
Our Milky Way is just one of countless millions of galaxies that have been observed in the heavens. Large scale structures consisting of clusters of galaxies have been identified and help us understand how the Universe began and where it is headed.
After the presentation, fires will be ready. You are welcome to braai your meat, enjoy your picnic basket or have something to eat at Café Kremetart. After dark telescopes will be ready for you to look at the various planets and stars visible this time of the year. You don't need a telescope, but if you do have a telescope bring it along.
Remember to bring along your own cutlery and crockery(if you braai) and WARM CLOTHING!
The talk will be in English.
21 June 2014
Cost : R100 per person
Venue : Café Kremetart
Contact : Johan Rademan