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Welcome to the VCON 38 Programming Schedule.

Every year, VCON’s crack Programming team assembles three days jam-packed with the best in panels, workshops, and events to keep you in geek nirvana. We hope that you are as excited by the panels, discussions, workshops and presentations we have on offer this year as we are!

Remember to purchase your weekend membership from our membership registration page before September 15! Adult weekend memberships purchased online are only $45 - 75% of the $60 at the door rate. 
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Sunday, October 6 • 12:00pm - 1:00pm
Exploring Worlds Far, Far Away - Without Hyperdrive

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When "Star Wars" filled cinemas around the world in 1977, the sky was empty of known planets outside the Solar System. Today, there are nearly a thousand confirmed exoplanets, including worlds with twin sunrises like Anakin and Luke witnessed on their home planet of Tatooine.

There are also worlds whose environments are so extreme that even George Lucas might have rejected them as too weird for science fiction. Many of these exoplanets were discovered by using the force; in this case, the subtle effects of the force of gravity as a planet orbits its parent star. More and more are revealed by the tiny dips in starlight as some planets pass in front of their stars, when we see only the dark side of these mysterious worlds.

Learn how astronomers make these measurements, and how the first world beyond the Solar System was actually found by Canadians in 1988, but remained the planetary equivalent of "The Phantom Tennis Ball" in space until confirmed in 2002.

The "Star Wars" movies would be pretty dull if worlds like Dagobah and Coruscant were not teeming with life. What about the worlds we are finding today? Can any support life? Join me to find out if the planned "Star Wars: Episode 7" might be set a short time from now, in a galaxy very, very close... our own Milky Way.

avatar for Jaymie Matthews

Jaymie Matthews

Jaymie Matthews is a UBC astrophysics professor who searches for planets beyond the Solar System and probes the hidden interiors of distant stars, using space telescopes as large as minivans and as small as car batteries. Jaymie is heavily involved in astronomy education and outreach, winning the 2016 Qilak Award for those efforts. (Qilak is the Inuit word for the sky overhead.) In a parallel universe, Jaymie would be a filmmaker, and he does a... Read More →

Sunday October 6, 2013 12:00pm - 1:00pm
Room 04: Screenings & Presentations (The Harvard) 2nd Floor

Attendees (13)