November 4, 1999 CfA Colloquium


Title: Astrophysics and Cosmology from Space Telescope Observations of Gravitational Lenses

Speaker: Dr. Emilio Falco-Acosta

Abstract: I will present new applications of gravitational lenses as astrophysical and cosmological tools. Such applications are becoming possible thanks to advances in the quality and quantity of observations. CASTLES (the CfA-Arizona-Space-Telescope-LEns-Survey) is an ongoing project that exploits the sensitivity and resolution of the Hubble Space Telescope at optical and infrared wavelengths to study the sample of over 50 known gravitational lenses. The observational goal of CASTLES is a uniform sample of multi-band images of all known galaxy-mass lens systems, to derive precise photometry and astrometry for the lens galaxies, all the known images, and any source or lens components that might have escaped detection. With these measurements we are investigating: (1) the properties of dust and of dark matter in lens galaxies out to redshift 1; (2) the dark matter in lens galaxies and in their environments; (3) the evolution of lens galaxies; and (4) the cosmological model, for instance by refining constraints on the Hubble constant.

Student Lunch: Friday 11/5 at 12:00 in A-101.

Further Reading: