St. Louis Astronomical Society Meeting: Celestial Fast Radio Wave Bursts - Who, What, How?

St. Louis Astronomical Society Meeting: Celestial Fast Radio Wave Bursts - Who, What, How?

An illustrated presentation by Professor Jonathan Katz, Washington University in St. Louis

Professor Jonathan Katz will be featured at the April meeting of the Saint Louis Astronomical Society. The meeting will be held in McDonnell Hall, Room 162 and on Zoom.

Fast radio bursts are powerful blasts of radio waves, lasting only a small fraction of a second. They are now known to be incredibly distant – millions of light years beyond our Milky Way galaxy. Some sources repeat bursts; others do not. Their origins are not yet known, but some possibilities involve supermassive black holes or colliding neutron stars. Professor Katz will talk about the nature of the bursts, where they are located, and theories about how such powerful blasts can be generated. He will also talk about some of the huge radio telescopes, which detect radio waves rather than light waves, that are used to study them.

Jonathan Katz is a Professor of Physics and a Faculty Fellow of the McDonnell Center for the Space Sciences at Washington University. His research areas include astrophysics, “soft matter,” climate, and applied physics. One of his current research projects is the study of Fast Radio Bursts.

The St. Louis Astronomical Society is an organization for individuals interested in astronomy and telescopes. The public is invited to attend its meetings, telescope observing sessions, and special events. For more about information about Astronomical Society events, please visit or call 314-962-9231. The event, cosponsored by NASA's Missouri Space Grant Consortium at Washington University,  is open to the public free of charge.

McDonnell Hall is on the south side of the Danforth Campus, One Brookings Drive, St. Louis 63130. The closest parking is street parking on Forsyth Boulevard or the East End Garage. Parking is free for entry after 5:00 pm in yellow or visitor parking spaces only. If you prefer to attend virtually, non-members of SLAS may request the Zoom link here: