Our Speaker for 9 October 2015 at the Sunshine Coast Arts Centre, 5714 Medusa St, Sechelt, will be Dr. Patrick Cote of the National Research Council, Herzberg Astronomy and Astrophysics Centre, Victoria, BC. His topic will be: "Skies Wide Open: Canadian Plans for Wide-Field Astronomical Facilities in the Coming Decade."
"Many of the most pressing open questions in astronomy -- ranging from the nature of Dark Energy to the origin of the Milky Way --- require precise observations of faint sources scattered over the ultra-wide fields. For this reason, a number of wide-field telescopes are now being developed by the international astronomical community. Most of these facilities are expected to see "first light" in the 2020s.
"Canada, which has a proud history in wide-field astronomy, is keeping pace through participation in several of these projects. In addition, the Canadian astronomical community has, for several years, been developing plans for its own wide-field facilities. In this talk, I describe two exciting projects that are under active investigation in Canada. The first is the Mauna Kea Spectroscopic Explorer (MSE), a proposed 10m telescope that would be devoted exclusively to wide-field spectroscopy at optical and infrared wavelengths -- the largest and most powerful facility of its kind ever devised. The second project, CASTOR, is a proposed wide-field space telescope that would rival NASA's Hubble Space Telescope in image quality, but cover a field of view roughly two hundred times larger. ”
Admittance is by donation.