Curious Physicists

Curious Physicists

Curious Physicists
Monday 14 December 2020, 3.45pm to 4.45pm GMT
Past event
Past event
Monday 14 December 2020, 3.45pm to 4.45pm GMT
  • Professor Roger Davies
    Professor Roger Davies
Total solar eclipses and black holes
Open to: 
Alumni and guests

Watch now

Join Oxford University's Professor Roger Davies (Christ's 1975) as he explains how the 2020 recipients of the Nobel Prize for Physics (which included Oxford mathematician Sir Roger Penrose) showed that black holes were predicted by Einstein’s General Theory of Relativity and how they were able to demonstrate the existence of such a super-massive black hole at the heart of our own galaxy. The first test of General Relativity was made by measuring the deflection of light during the 1919 solar eclipse. During the talk a total solar eclipse will cross Chile and Argentina and participants should be able to watch it via a live stream online, along with the presentation.

This talk is part of the Oxford and Cambridge Universities Alumni Travel programme and is organised by Last Frontiers, our tour operator partner for Latin America.


3.45pm - Welcome from Ed Paine, Last Frontiers, Claire Baxter and Kate Suares, Cambridge and Oxford Alumni Offices

3.55pm - Talk from Professor Davies

4.30pm - Q&A with Professor Davies, facilitated by Ed Paine

4.45pm - Finish

Please note, this event will be recorded.


Professor Roger Davies

Christ's 1975

Professor Roger Davies (Christ's 1975), is the Philip Wetton Professor and Director of the Hintze Centre for Astrophysical Surveys at the University of Oxford.

Professor Davies started his research working on galaxy dynamics in Cambridge in the 1970s after which he moved to California before spending 6 years on the staff of the US National Observatory in Tucson, Arizona. As part of the “7 Samurai” team, he worked out a new way of measuring the distances to galaxies and discovered the “Great Attractor”, a huge concentration of galaxy clusters in the southern sky. He moved to Oxford in 1988 to lead the UK's participation in the construction of the 8m Gemini telescopes in Hawaii and Chile. In 1994 he took up the post of Professor of Astronomy at Durham University returning to Oxford in 2002 where he was Chairman of the Physics Department and then Head of Astrophysics. He is the founding Director of the Hintze Centre for Astrophysical Surveys. He was President of the Royal Astronomical Society from 2010-2012 and was elected President of the European Astronomical Society in 2017.

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United Kingdom