Monday, September 21, 2020 - 9:00am to Friday, November 13, 2020 - 5:00pm
This encore course is PRE-RECORDED and unavailable for live streaming. YouTube video links will be posted in "Course Materials" on September 21 and available for viewing anytime until December 31. We will host two livestream Q&A classes with the professor: Oct. 23, 10:30-noon and Nov. 13, 10:30-noon.
The Earth wasn’t always called a planet. Now Pluto is having problems. What defines a planet? How do they appear, live, and die? Planetary exploration started 50 years ago, exoplanets (around other stars) were first discovered 25 years ago (garnering the latest Nobel Prize), and it has been less than a decade since we have understood that most stars have planetary systems. Many of those turn out to be quite different from ours. Explore the progress we have made, how we have made it, and what we have learned about other planets, including whether they may sustain life.
Gibor Basri taught in the astronomy department at UC Berkeley for 35 years. His favorite classes were the introductory courses for non-majors and seminars for first-year students. He has used many big telescopes on and off the planet. He enjoys making science accessible to the general public and has been given the Sagan Award for this talent.