Astronomy Lecture

Exploding Stars and the Accelerating Universe

06/27/2019 | 07:00PM - 08:30PM

Meeting Room 3


Observations of a class of exploding stars, type Ia supernovae, ushered in a cosmological revolution: the expansion of the Universe is speeding up. Dr. Saurabh W. Jha of Rutgers University will describe how observations of these exploding stars, from telescopes on the ground and in space, are used to take measure of the cosmos and shed light on the mysterious "dark energy" that dominates and drives our accelerating Universe.

Saurabh W. Jha is Professor of Physics and Astronomy at Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey. Prof. Jha's research focuses on studying exploding white dwarf stars called Type Ia supernovae, and using them as cosmological tools with which to survey the Universe. Prof. Jha's current research is supported by the National Science Foundation, NASA, and the Department of Energy.

An East Brunswick native (EBHS '92), Prof. Jha received his Ph.D. in astronomy in 2002 from Harvard University, and subsequently was a Miller Research Fellow at UC Berkeley and then a Panofsky Fellow at the Stanford Linear Accelerator Center, before joining the Rutgers faculty in 2007. Prof. Jha was a member of the High-z Supernova Search Team, one of two teams that in 1998 discovered that the expansion of the Universe was accelerating. For this work, Prof. Jha was a co-recipient of the Gruber Cosmology Prize in 2007, and the Breakthrough Prize in Fundamental Physics in 2015.

Astronomy Lecture