Adventures in wide-field astronomy
Professor Elaine Sadler

School of Physics
Universirty of Sydney

6 July  2010, 8:00 pm

Physics Lecture Theatre 1, University of Tasmania, Sandy Bay



The Canadian astronomer Sydney van den Bergh predicted a decade ago that "The astronomy of the 21st century will be dominated by computer-based manipulation of huge homogeneous surveys of various types of astronomical objects."   In many ways this has come true, and I hope to share with you some of the excitement of the large, wide-field astronomical surveys in which I and my colleagues have been involved.  I will talk about some of the challenges of this kind of work, as well as showing how wide-field astronomy can provide unique insights into the evolution of galaxies and their central black holes over timescales of billions of years.  Finally, I will give a glimpse of future developments in wide-field radio astronomy.


Elaine Sadler completed an undergraduate physics degree at the University of Queensland, followed by a PhD in astronomy from the Australian National University. She held postdoctoral fellowships at the European Southern Observatory in Germany and Kitt Peak National Observatory in the United States before returning to Australia in 1988 to take up a research position at the Anglo-Australian Observatory.

One of her main research interests is galaxy evolution, using large observational data sets to study how galaxies form and change on timescales of billions of years.

Elaine is currently an ARC Australian Professorial Fellow in the School of Physics at the University of Sydney. She is also president of Division VIII (galaxies and the universe) of the International Astronomical Union, and chair of the National Committee for Astronomy.

2010 Harley Wood Lecture of the Astronomical Society of Australia.