RFO Speaker Series: An Astronomical Perspective on Globular Clusters and the Pale Blue Dot

  • April 25, 2023 7:00 PM - 8:00 PM
  • Pacific Standard Time

Ticket Price $0.00-$20.00 This event is now over

Join RFO and Professor Adrienne Cool from San Francisco State University, for an informative conversation on "An Astronomical Perspective on Globular Clusters and the Pale Blue Dot."


Globular clusters are beautiful and ancient structures that have been providing insight into the structure of our galaxy and the evolution of stars for more than 100 years.  Each of these globe-like clusters contains some hundreds of thousands of stars in constant motion, and held together by their mutual gravitational attraction.  Dr. Cool will describe the role that binary stars play in their fascinating internal dynamics and give some examples of how binaries are revealed in clusters using space-based observatories including the Hubble Space Telescope and the Chandra X-ray Observatory.  Spending time focused on things that are almost incomprehensibly distant and vast gives astronomers and astronomy enthusiasts an unusual perspective on our own small planet.  Astronomers for Planet Earth (A4E) was founded in 2019 to harness this perspective to mobilize the global astronomical community to take action on the climate crisis.  Dr. Cool will briefly describe the goals and current activities of this world-wide organization of more than 1700 astronomy educators, students, and amateurs and invite you to share your thoughts about astronomy's impact on our view of our home planet.


Dr. Adrienne Cool is a native of New York City, and received her undergraduate degree in physics at Yale. After brief stints in medical imaging and Electrical Engineering, she happened on astronomy and hasn't looked back.  She completed her PhD at Harvard, and came to California for a postdoc at UC Berkeley.  She is now at San Francisco State University where she and her  students have been studying ordinary and extraordinary stars in globular clusters since 1996. She also serve as the director of the SF State Planetarium and Observatory facilities.  In 2019 she co-founded Astronomers for Planet Earth (a4e.org), an organization whose mission is to mobilize and empower the global astronomical community to take action on the climate crisis.

Date & Time

Tue, Apr 25, 2023 7:00 PM - 8:00 PM

Robert Ferguson Observatory

The Valley of the Moon Observatory Association (VMOA) is volunteer amateur and professional astronomers plus a small supporting staff organized as a nonprofit association to provide educational programs about science and astronomy for students, the public, and in support of educators.

The VMOA is responsible for the construction, maintenance and utilization of the Robert Ferguson Observatory and functions as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization under the auspices of the California State Parks System, and in cooperation with our local state parks.