Free Astronomy Event: U of I Professor to Give Talk on Interplay between Massive Stars and Gas in Galaxies April 18

University of Illinois Astronomy Professor Dr. You-Hua Chu will give a free public talk, “Interplay between Massive Stars and Gas in Galaxies,” on Monday, April 18, from 5 to 6 p.m. on the Joliet Junior College Main Campus, 1215 Houbolt Road in Joliet.

Massive stars are about eight times heavier than our Sun and form from molecular gas clouds that exist in galaxies. As these stars evolve, they energize this ambient gas and dust through ultraviolet radiation and fast stellar winds during their lifetimes and through supernova explosions when they die.

Dr. Chu will use radio, infrared, visible, ultraviolet, and X-ray observations of the Milky Way Galaxy and the Magellanic Clouds to illustrate the interplay between massive stars and the surrounding gas that resides in galaxies. She will also discuss the astrophysics that can be learned from these observations.

Admission to this event, which will be held in the D-Building in room D-2002, is free. Refreshments will be served starting at 4:45 p.m.

Dr. Chu was born and raised in Taiwan and received a bachelor’s degree in physics from National Taiwan University in 1975, and her Ph.D. in astronomy from the University of California at Berkeley in 1981.

She spent several years doing full-time research before becoming a professor at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 1997. She has been the chair of the astronomy department at UIUC since 2005. Chu said she is fascinated by the interactions between stars and the interstellar medium, in other words, the material between stars. She has been studying this subject for the last 31 years, using observations at visible, ultraviolet, X-ray, and radio wavelengths.

For more information, contact Noella D’Cruz at or call (815) 280-2572.

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