Behrend astronomy program to focus on expansion of universe

September 22, 2017

ERIE, Pa. — The universe is more than 14 billion years old, and yet, it’s larger than ever.

For most of us, keeping up with an expanding universe is easier said than done. Darren Williams will discuss how one can do just that when Open House Nights in Astronomy returns to Penn State Erie, The Behrend College, on Thursday, Oct. 5. His presentation, “Toward the Edge of Space and Time: Clues from an Expanding Universe,” will begin at 7:45 p.m. in Room 101 of the Otto Behrend Science Building. It is free and open to the public.

“Today, astronomers are using big telescopes to see farther into space and farther back in time than ever before. Clues to the expansion come from the ability to measure velocities and distances to galaxies near the limit of observation. The rest is math on paper,” said Williams, a professor of physics and astronomy at Penn State Behrend.

During his talk, Williams will outline how astronomical measurements are made. He also will go over the evidence, derived from the data and mathematics, that proves the universe is expanding.

The lecture will be followed by a 15-minute Q&A session hosted by Williams. Astronomical observing will also be offered if weather permits.

Free programs on the night sky will be held in the Yahn Planetarium before Williams’ talk, beginning at 6:15 and 6:45 p.m.

Open House Nights in Astronomy are an outreach program of the School of Science at Penn State Behrend. These scientific presentations are intended for ages 8 and up; for additional information, contact the school at 814-898-6105.

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Last Updated September 22, 2017