Traveling Light: The Universe’s Oldest Story Told by the Cosmic Microwave Background

Jul 16, 2024 - 7:00 pm to 8:00 pm

Hewlett Teaching Center, Room 200 and online - Register here

Dr. Federico Bianchini (KIPAC/Stanford)


Cosmic Microwave Background

About the Lecture

The cosmic microwave background (CMB) is the afterglow of the Big Bang and represents the oldest light in the Universe, emitted when the Universe was 0.003% of its current age. This ancient light has traveled through space for nearly 14 billion years, bringing us important information about the early Universe. By studying this "baby picture" of the Universe, we can learn about how the Universe began, how it has changed over time, and what its future might be like. In this lecture, I will discuss the journey of this "traveling light," explaining why it is so important and how it interacts with other cosmic structures (such as galaxies and dark matter) through gravitational lensing. I will also introduce the latest discoveries made by the South Pole Telescope, the largest CMB telescope ever deployed at the South Pole.

Live stream URL can be found at the bottom of the EventBrite registration confirmation email.

Register for the lecture

Federico Bianchini

About the Speaker

Dr. Federico Bianchini is a research scientist at Stanford/SLAC,  specializing in the analysis and interpretation of data from ground- and space-based cosmological experiments. His work focuses on studying the cosmic microwave background (CMB) using advanced statistical and computational methodologies, such as reconstructing gravitational lensing maps and performing cross-correlation analyses between CMB data and large-scale structure surveys. Federico is part of several international collaborations, including the South Pole Telescope and the upcoming CMB-Stage 4 project. Federico received his PhD from SISSA in Italy and was a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Melbourne in Australia before moving to Stanford. When he’s not creating new bugs in his code, Federico enjoys exploring the Bay Area's beaches and woods, playing music, and savoring delicious food.

Directions and Parking

This event will take place in the Hewlett Teaching Center (370 Jane Stanford Way) on the Stanford campus. Upon arrival, please check in in the foyer of the building and follow signs for Room 200.

The closest visitor parking is in the Via Ortega Garage and along the Stanford Oval. All parking is free in spaces marked Visitor, A, or C after 4pm unless indicated otherwise. Accessible parking is also available along the Stanford Oval.

If you plan to take public transportation, some lines of the Marguerite Shuttle connect between the Palo Alto Transit Center and the campus. You can get to the Hewlett Teaching Center by taking Line P (drops off at the Stanford Oval), Line X (drops off at the ChEM-H Building on Jane Stanford Way), and Line Y (picks up across from the ChEM-H Building on Jane Stanford Way). A complete list of shuttle schedules and route maps can be found here.