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Cosmic Diary

Stellar Death

22 Dec 2009, 15:06 UTC
Stellar Death
(200 words excerpt, click title or image to see full post)

Bob Kirshner (right) and Brian Schmidt (left)
When I was close to the end of my Master in Astronomy at the University of Padua, I do not exactly remember why I decided to do my thesis work on Supernovae, under the supervision of prof. Roberto Barbon. So, sometime in early 1991 I got a date with him and his collaborators to discuss a possible project. At the end of the meeting, one of his two assistants (the inseparable duo Turatto&Cappellaro/Cappellaro&Turatto) gave me four reviews and told me: “Here is all what you need to know about Supernovae“. On the train that brought me back home, I started having a look. It was in fact papers by Robert Kirshner, David Branch, Alex Filippenko and Craig Wheeler, whom I immediately considered as the bosses in the supernova field (and I still do). As seen in retrospective they clearly doomed my fate. Many years have passed, but time does not seem to have had any effect on them. However, they (as we all do) are getting of age.
Bruno Leibundgut and Nikolaj Chugai
There is a tradition in the astronomical community: whenever one of the VIPs turns sixty an international conference is organized ...

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