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PHYSICS COLLOQUIUM
Distinguished Alumni Award Winner
Mark Devlin
University of Pennsylvania
Where Did Half the Starlight
in the Universe Go?
W
e believe that approximately half of all the light from
stars is absorbed and reprocessed by dust. The resulting
emission is grey body with a temperature near 30
Kelvin. The COBE satellite made the first measurements of the
resulting Far Infrared Background (FIRB), but since that time,
we have been unable to resolve the background into individual
galaxies. The Balloon-borne Large Aperture Submillimeter
Telescope (BLAST) was designed to do this job. Its three bands at
250, 350, and 500 microns span the peak in emission for galaxies
at z=1. I will discuss the BLAST experiment and present results
from our measurements of resolved and unresolved galaxies. I will
also discuss the implications for star formation in our own galaxy
and how dust is changing the way we look at current and future
searches for primordial gravity waves with the Cosmic Microwave
Background.
4:00 pm • Friday May 8, 2015 • 2241 Chamberlin Hall • Coffee at 3:30 pm