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RCA General Meeting: The Expanding Universe — Discovery, Controversies, and Hope

  • OMSI 1945 Southeast Water Avenue Portland, OR, 97214 (map)

Ethan Siegel, Author of Beyond the Galaxy

In the 1920s, Edwin Hubble's observations of stars in distant nebulae not only proved that the grand spirals in the sky were galaxies beyond the Milky Way, but allowed us to determine, for the first time, that the Universe was expanding. However, measuring the rate of this expansion has proved challenging: first for geologists, then for stellar astronomers, then for cosmologists and even today. This talk will examine the history of the expanding Universe and detail, up until the present day, how cutting edge science looks to determine, once and for all, exactly how the Universe has been expanding for the entire history of the cosmos.


Ethan is a big fan of short biographies. He's also a fan of writing long, glorious, illustrated articles that tell what we know about the Universe and how we know it. He's been writing the blog Starts With A Bang since 2008, currently at Forbes. If you're really into astronomy, he's been writing a monthly column for NASA's The Space Place since 2013, appearing in over 200 astronomy club newsletters worldwide. His very first book, Beyond the Galaxy, is now available from World Scientific. If you ever wanted to know the entire story of what the Universe is made of, how big it is, where it came from and what it's fate is, told in plain English with no equations, you'll definitely want to get yourself a copy. When he's not writing, Ethan can be found appearing on TV and radio spots, teaching at Lewis & Clark college, working with various science museums and sharing what we know about the Universe with as many people as he can, across the world. His beard and mustache follow him wherever he goes, and he's delighted to be returning to the Rose City Astronomers.

Ethan's second book: Treknology, will be published in October of this year, and will highlight the real-life scientific progress behind more than 25 of the greatest technologies envisioned by Star Trek.

Slides from February Meeting

Earlier Event: February 20
New Member Orientation
Later Event: February 22
Cosmology SIG