Black Holes, Galaxies, and Exoplanets 
From Your Back Yard
Brooke D. Simmons
Einstein Fellow
Center for Astrophysics and Space Sciences
University of California - San Diego

Monday, 7 May 2018, 7:00 pm
Mediatheque (1st Floor)
Pacific Northwest College of Art
511 NW Broadway, Portland, OR 97209
The lecture is free and open to the public. It's co-sponsored with Pacific Northwest College of Art's Make + Think + Code program.

It has become clear over the last decades that super-massive black holes coevolve
with the galaxies that surround them. But just how has this growth and co-evolution taken place over 8 billion years? Using Hubble Space Telescope and Sloan Digital Sky Survey data, Dr. Simmons identified galaxies that have had a completely calm history, yet have black hole masses of up to 107 solar masses. They appear consistent with the relation between black hole mass and total galaxy mass, a relation derived from elliptical galaxies with a history including mergers. This indicates that the fundamental cause of the galaxy-black hole connection may not be the same as the main driver of the structural evolution of galactic baryons. In this talk, Dr. Simmons will also demonstrate the Zooniverse project builder, based on the Galaxy Zoo project which contributed to her research findings - a highly cited project that mobilizes the public to visually classify galaxies.

Dr. Brooke Simmons is currently an Einstein Fellow at the UCSD Center for Astrophysics and Space Sciences. Prior to that she worked as a Postdoc in Astrophysics at Oxford as a core founding member of the Galaxy Zoo project - one of the original web-based citizen science projects that led to the Zooniverse ecosystem that we have today. Her Ph.D. is from Yale University and her research has been focused on galaxy evolution and the co-evolution of supermassive black holes with their host galaxies. In addition to her core research in astrophysics, Dr. Simmons has played an active role in public engagement in the sciences, giving numerous public lectures and contributing to citizen science projects.