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The Final Fates of Stars

Tyrone Woods


How do stars die and what do they leave behind? How does this change whenwe look back to galaxies in their infancy, when the Universe was less than a billion years old? In this talk, I will explain how we can answer these key questions by combining data from state-of-the-art telescopes with theoretical simulations on high-performance computing facilities. In the nearby Universe, I will show how we are reconstructing the hidden origins of supernovae, based on the imprint these exploding stars leave in their ambient environment. Peering into the distant Universe, I will show how we are uncovering the formation of supermassive black holes from the collapse of the most massive stars that ever lived. Our theoretical work has now set the stage for multi-messenger observations with the James Webb Space Telescope, the Laser Interferometer Space Antenna, and beyond, which will provide the definitive test of the origins of these cosmic titans. Finally, as Science Co-Lead for the Cosmological Advanced Survey Telescope for Optical and UV Research (CASTOR), I will outline how Canada will play a leading role over the coming years in unravelling fundamental questions in high energy astrophysics, including both the physics of supernovae and the nature of accretion onto supermassive black holes, with the launch of astronomy's foremost eye on the UV sky in the next decade.

Date: Monday, 30 January 2023
Time: 14:30
Where: McGill University
  Trottier Space Institute (3550 University), Conference Room

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