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Celebrating Stephen Hawking: How black holes are not quite black

A non-technical talk by Andrew Fraknoi

Room 5015

October 12, 2018

7:30 p.m.


Archive Story


Sponsored by the Peninsula Astronomical Society

Scientists and science enthusiasts are mourning the passing of Stephen Hawking, one of the great minds and spirits of our time. In this introductory, non-technical talk, Andrew Fraknoi will briefly summarize Hawking's life, and talk about the importance of his scientific work. He'll focus on Hawking's work merging the world of the big and heavy (described by Einstein's General Theory of Relativity) with the world of the small and light (described by quantum mechanics). Then he'll describe how this merger led to the idea of mini black holes, "Hawking Radiation," and the bizarre notion that black holes don't have to be fully black. No background in science or math will be required, but be prepared to have your mind boggled.

Andrew Fraknoi retired from Foothill College in 2017. He still teaches occasional non-credit astronomy classes through the University of San Francisco Fromm Institute and San Francisco State's OLLI program. Fraknoi was named Professor of the Year for the state of California in 2007 and appears from time to time on the radio explaining astronomy in everyday language. He is the lead author of a new, free, open-source, introductory astronomy textbook, published by OpenStax, and has written two children's books on astronomy. Asteroid 4859 has been named Asteroid Fraknoi to honor his contributions to the public understanding of science.

Foothill College is just off the El Monte Road exit from Freeway 280 in Los Altos.

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The Peninsula Astronomical Society is an organization of amateur astronomers who meet monthly at Foothill College and offer student and public observing at the Foothill College Observatory. See: