Variable Sources in Galaxies Workshop 

February 6 and 7, 2024

The Center produced the first Variable Sources in Galaxies Workshop where research presentations were given on the topic of time-resolved observations of objects in galaxies that vary. Galaxies are relatively stable structures over millions (but possibly not billions) of years. However, galaxies are teeming with erratically variable sources. This zoo of flickering, pulsating, dipping, flaring and oscillating objects provide a wealth of information about exotic objects in our galaxy and others. In this workshop, many of these variable sources were discussed.

The Scientific Organizing Committee was spearheaded by Professor Dave Russell, along with Joseph Gelfand, Andrea Macció, and Ingyin Zaw. The workshop poster may be found here.

This artist’s impression shows the exotic double object that consists of a tiny, but very heavy neutron star that spins 25 times each second, orbited every two and a half hours by a white dwarf star. The neutron star is a pulsar named PSR J0348+0432 that is giving off radio waves that can be picked up on Earth by radio telescopes. Although this unusual pair is very interesting in its own right it is also a unique laboratory for testing the limits of physical theories. This system is radiating gravitational radiation, ripples in spacetime. Although these waves cannot be yet detected directly by astronomers on Earth they can be detected indirectly by measuring the change in the orbit of the system as it loses energy. As the pulsar is so small the relative sizes of the two objects are not drawn to scale.

Workshops and Key Seminars