Event Details

DATE: Thursday, November 16, 2023
TIME: 11:30 AM to 2:00 PM
COST: $40 per person
LOCATION: Irondequoit Country Club (4045 East Avenue Rochester, NY 14618)

For event questions, contact Matthew J O’Connor 585.704.3970

Speaker: Dr. Adan Lidz, Department of Physics & Astronomy, University of Pennsylvania
Topic: The First Galaxies and Our Cosmic Dawn

The ever-popular Annual Cornell-Penn Thanksgiving Luncheon is returning once again in November! Irrespective of which football team wins the November 4 game at Franklin Field in Philadelphia, come hear a fascinating talk by a Penn astrophysicist on the origins of our universe. The insights Dr. Adam Lidz will share have been made possible by breathtaking data from the James Webb Space Telescope, an observatory assembled, integrated and tested by a division of Eastman Kodak Company, now part of L3-Harris.



About the Speaker
Professor Adam Lidz is a theoretical astrophysicist and a cosmologist. One focus of his research is on studying the time period in the history of our universe when the first stars, galaxies, and black holes formed. This is a key stage in understanding how our universe evolves from smooth, simple initial conditions to its present complex and structured state with planets, stars, galaxies, clusters of galaxies, and other structures. Although we know relatively little about the era of the first luminous sources thus far, we expect significant advances in the next several years. Professor Lidz constructs theoretical models of this early phase in the history of our universe and develops new approaches for extracting information about this time period from current and upcoming observational data.

About the Talk
Professor Lidz will speak about the formation of the first galaxies and why this is interesting to us, how the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) can help us learn about this time period, and describe some of the early findings from the spaceborne observatory. He will also discuss another exciting probe of this era: efforts to detect radio waves from intergalactic neutral hydrogen gas from this time period.  

NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope has produced the deepest and sharpest infrared image of the distant universe to date. Known as Webb’s First Deep Field, this image of galaxy cluster SMACS 0723 is overflowing with detail. Released in July 2022 during a press conference with President Biden, you can read more about this image here (https://www.nasa.gov/image-article/nasas-webb-delivers-deepest-infrared-image-of-universe-yet/). The star field is closely connected to Professor Lidz’s luncheon talk.
(Image credit: NASA, ESA, CSA, and STScI.)


An artist’s rendition of the fully deployed JWST Observatory, courtesy of NASA. For more on Eastman Kodak’s involvement with JWST, a history now told by L3-Harris, see: https://www.l3harris.com/all-capabilities/james-webb-space-telescope.