Episode 32: The Space Between the Stars, with Christopher McKee

For more info on the podcast, please see our About page.

Feature Guest: Christopher McKee

mckeeAstronomy and science popularizaer Carl Sagan famously declared “We are all starstuff.” He was referring to the discovery that much of the heavier elements in our body formed in the supernovas of dying stars. But after supernovas eject material out into the galaxy, how does that gas – and the rest of the interstellar medium – form into new stars, planets and ultimately us? To help answer that question Christopher McKee joins Justin Trottier at The Star Spot.

The two discuss McKee’s contribution to our understanding of the interstellar medium, how the discovery of dark matter effected his model, and what role his work in two very different areas of astrophysics – quasars and the space between the stars – played in advancing his career.

Current in Space

Chinese astronauts blast off on a new mission to their space lab in what will be the longest duration Chinese mission to date. And could crowdfunding be the new mechanism by which we build  space telescope to detect alien worlds?

About Christopher McKee

Astrophysicist Christopher McKee is professor of physics and astronomy at the University of California Berkeley, where he co-founded the Theoretical Astrophysics Center. He has had appointments at Caltech, Harvard and the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. McKee is a member of the National Academy of Sciences and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. He is an authority on the interstellar medium, the environment of sparse gas that exists between the stars of our galaxy.

Links

Christopher McKee Berkeley Website

American Physical Society Page

Niels Bohr Library and Archives with the Center for History of Physics Interview

If you have interesting news and story ideas, as well as topics or potential interview guest, please send them to starspotpodcast@gmail.com

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