Programme - Astronomy - Physics and Astronomy - University of Canterbury - New Zealand


Galaxy M81

Galaxy Evolution
UC astronomers are involved in several galaxy surveys, piecing together data from a wide range of wavelengths for large numbers of galaxies. The multi-wavelength coverage allows the measurement of important physical properties of the galaxies, and so tests models of galaxy formation and evolution. The surveys include the H-ATLAS, GAMA and several SKA pathfinder surveys.

Globular Clusters and Galactic Chemical Evolution
Observational and theoretical studies of star clusters and their influence on the evolution of galaxies. (Supported by Marsden Fund research grant Element enrichment through mergers and stellar nucleosynthesis, Cottrell & Albrow.)
Gravitational Microlensing
UC astronomers are members of two international collaborations involved in the detection and detailed study of gravitationally lensed stars to discover planets and dark matter. PLANET    MOA
In much the same way that seismologists use earthquakes to deduce the structure of our planet, UC astrophysicists study the internal structure of stars by measuring tiny motions on their surfaces. (Supported by Marsden Fund research grant The music of the stars: Internal structure revealed through the surface vibrations of stars, Pollard & Cottrell.)
 Pulsating Stars
Pulsating low mass supergiant stars are the precursors of proto-planetary nebulae. UC astrophysicists use facilities at the Mt John Observatory to study the pulsations and the shock waves produced in these stars.
Optical Design
UC astrophysicists have designed sophisticated optics and instrumentation for a number of medium - large telescopes both in New Zealand and overseas.
 General Relativity and Theoretical Cosmology
UC astrophysicists work on theories of fundamental structure, black holes and dark energy.
  • Department of Physics and Astronomy
    University of Canterbury,
    Private Bag 4800,
    Christchurch 8140,
    New Zealand.
    Phone: +64 3 364 2523
    Fax: +64 3 364 2469
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