Turbulence in the Solar Wind

1 Dec 2020 5:45 PM

In this Public Lecture, physicist Professor Sean Oughton will talk about turbulence in outer space, and in particular solar wind turbulence.

The solar wind is a stream of ionized particles, primarily electrons and protons, that races outwards from the sun through the solar system. It is fast – moving at speeds as high as 900 kilometres per second – so it would take only a few seconds to travel the length of the North Island.

Professor Oughton will set the scene by explaining what the solar wind is, how it interacts with the earth and why turbulence is a key part of the associated ‘weather’ in space. Following that, he will outline how his research makes use of maths and computer simulations to develop models of the solar wind, which he compares with spacecraft data.

Currently a Professor of Mathematics and the author of more than 100 publications focusing on hydrodynamic and magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) turbulence, Dr Oughton’s primary research interests centre on understanding turbulent flows. He is particularly enthusiastic about the potential outcomes his work will have on improving our understanding of turbulence and its role in the solar wind.

Complimentary drinks and nibbles served from 5.15pm.

Please register your attendance here and bring your eticket with you on the evening.


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