Sunday, September 26

Astrophysics for Dummies | Prof Chris Done | TEDxNewcastle

Astrophysics for Dummies | Prof Chris Done | TEDxNewcastle

This talk was given at a local TEDx event, produced independently of the TED Conferences. Astrophysicist with an interest in
black holes. Back in the UK after a stint with NASA.

A joint Thinking Digital Production with Newcastle University. Sponsored by Newcastle University and supported by Newcastle Science City.

Chris Done grew up wanting to be Spock from Star Trek, so doing a PhD in Astrophysics at Cambridge was living the dream. She worked on theoretical models of the intense high energy X-ray radiation which can be produced when material falls towards a black hole, before it disappears forever below the event horizon. She then moved to the USA, to NASA, Goddard Space Flight Center, and started to work more with observational data from these systems. An unexpected highlight was that she became part of the team doing real time control of an X-ray telescope in the payload bay of the Space Shuttle! She returned to the UK, first to Leicester University and then to Durham, where she became one of the first women to be appointed as a Physics Professor. She now specializes in combining the best current theoretical models of what happens to material falling towards a black hole with the best observational data, working especially with the Japanese Space Agency (JAXA) using their innovative X-ray satellites. So she gets paid to do rocket science, and think about black holes!

About TEDx, x = independently organized event In the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience. At a TEDx event, TEDTalks video and live speakers combine to spark deep discussion and connection in a small group. These local, self-organized events are branded TEDx, where x = independently organized TED event. The TED Conference provides general guidance for the TEDx program, but individual TEDx events are self-organized.* (*Subject to certain rules and regulations)