Noted astrophysicist to discuss origins of the universe

Astrophysicist Michael S. TurnerAstrophysicist Michael S. Turner, known for his research on the origins of the universe, will speak at Wake Forest University Jan. 26.

Turner’s talk, “Big Bang Cosmology: From Quark Soup to the Expanding Universe,” will be held at 8 p.m. in Brendle Recital Hall. The event is free and open to the public.

“Using the hot big bang theory, the evolution of the universe can be traced from the hot, formless quark soup to the universe we see 14 billion years later, comprised of galaxies moving away from one another,” said Turner.

He is the Bruce V. and Diana M. Rauner Distinguished Service Professor and chair of the department of astronomy and astrophysics at the University of Chicago. He is also a member of the scientific staff at the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory.

Turner is a cosmologist whose research focuses on the earliest moments of the universe. He has made important contributions to inflationary universe theory and the understanding of dark matter. He and Edward Kolb helped to establish the Theoretical Astrophysics Group at Fermilab and wrote the book, “The Early Universe.” Turner received a bachelor’s degree in physics from the California Institute of Technology (1971) and a doctorate from Stanford University (1978). His association with the University of Chicago began in 1978 as an Enrico Fermi Fellow and in 1980 he joined the faculty.

Turner has been honored with the Helen B. Warner Prize of the American Astronomical Society, the Julius Edgar Lilienfeld Prize of the American Physical Society, the Halley Lectureship at Oxford University, and the Quantrell Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching at the University of Chicago. Turner has served on or chaired many advisory committees for the National Science Foundation, NASA and the Department of Energy. He served as president of the Aspen Center for Physics from 1989-1993.

The lecture is part of “Science and Technology: the Next Millennium,” a yearlong celebration of scientific inquiry in the coming millennium featuring events centered on science and technology topics such as computer security, women in science and the state of the environment.

All events are free and open to the public. For more information, call 336-758-5788 or visit the “Science and Technology” Web site.

Categories: Events, Research, Speakers, University Announcement