One of the most challenging endeavours in modern technological society is predicting the occurrence of adverse space weather conditions in the near-Earth space environment that are hazardous to technology and human life. The main source of adverse space weather is our active star, the Sun. Solar flares are highly energetic events that occur on the Sun, but can directly impact day-to-day technologies in space (e.g. satellites, GPS signals, astronaut radiation) and on Earth (e.g. radio communication).
In the last few years, we have witnessed a second renaissance in robotic space exploration. Unlike the era of Voyager and Magellan however, the missions that have truly caught the public’s eye have visited the Solar System’s small objects. New Horizons to Pluto, Rosetta to comet 67P, Dawn to Ceres and Vesta, we now have a deep understanding of these small bodies implicating facts about their formation that we are still yet to fully appreciate.
“Live fast and die hard: the evolution and death of massive stars”
Stars more massive than 8 Suns end their lives in dramatic supernova explosions. But before dying, these monster stars have tumultuous lives when they blow winds, suffer giant eruptions, and interact with companion stars. In this talk, Prof. Jose Groh (TCD) will give an overview on the fast lives of the most massive stars in the Universe and how they evolve. He will also discuss the roles of massive, monster stars as cosmic engines of the Universe.