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Our Universe, the Movie! (Based on a True Story)
Start: 27/05/2024, 16:00
End: 27/05/2024, 17:00
Contact:Rene Kotze -
Location: Neelsie Cinema and Online

​​​​​The question of our cosmic origins is as old as humanity. Today, numerical cosmologists are trying to answer this question by simulating universes on a computer, allowing us to run numerical experiments to test the input physics, interpret observations from our latest telescopes, and develop a holistic framework for understanding the evolution of our Universe from the Big Bang until today. Creating such scientifically-motivated movies of our universe's evolution is an area that has reached new levels of maturity within the past decade, where we can now simulate the beautiful diversity of objects seen from the earliest cosmic epochs to today. This has revolutionised our understanding of how galaxies like our own Milky Way grow and evolve, regulated by a complex interplay between dark matter establishing the Cosmic Web, the formation of stars that go supernova and drive powerful winds, and supermassive black holes that drive a continual exchange of matter and energy within largescale cosmic ecosystems. In this talk I will explain the motivation, ingredients, and methodologies that go into simulating the formation and evolution of galaxies, and highlight some fascinating and unexpected emergent phenomena that arise from putting all the relevant science we know into a computer. Finally, I will mention the role that radio observations such as from South Africa's world-leading MeerKAT radio telescope are playing in elucidating our cosmic origins story. So grab some popcorn and sit back as I take you on a wild ride of how we numerical cosmologists are producing Our Universe, the Movie! 

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