Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Conferences: The 29th New Mexico Symposium

On January 17th I presented a talk entitled "Generating Buoyant Magnetic Loops in Convective Dynamos" at the 29th New Mexico Symposium at the National Radio Astronomy Observatory facility on the campus of New Mexico Tech in Socorro, New Mexico. This was the first time I had been to Socorro and to be honest I wasn't expecting much from the town. I was very pleasantly surprised by the town and the campus. New Mexico Tech is a very nice place to spend a day talking about astrophysics.

It was great to learn about things like the Jansky Very-Large Array, the CHILES survey, and variable stars studied by the Kepler Asteroseismic Consortium, but my personal favorite was hearing about the Magdelena Ridge Observatory. MRO is currently under construction on South Baldy mountain west of Socorro and when completed it will be 10 1.4 meter telescopes spaced over as much as 340 meters, which will be used together as an optical interferometer. By doing so it will be able to achieve an angular resolution equivalent to a single telescope with a diameter of 340 meters - or about 30 times bigger than the world's current largest optical telescope.  When it comes online, MRO will be able to create resolved images of stars like our Sun - something that gets people like me very, very excited.

I focused on what we can do with the ASH code to simulate dynamo action and buoyant magnetic loops in sun-like stars. Below are a PDF copy of of the slides from my talk.