Public Outreach

Russell Frank Astronomy Lecture Series

The mission of the Russell Frank Astronomy Lecture Series is to bring distinguished scientists to UNLV to present lectures aimed at communicating cutting edge science to the general public. The lectures are free and are held once each semester. They are intended for a general audience and we encourage enthusiasts of all backgrounds and ages to attend.

The sponsor of the series, Russell Frank, is a New Jersey native who has multiple degrees and has taught at several prestigious institutions. Frank says: "I have enjoyed the various courses I have taken at UNLV and providing the astronomy and physics lecture series to the community is my way of giving back to the university."

The following scientists have participated in this series (in reverse chronological order):
Fiona Harrison, Scott Tremaine, Mario Livio, Shri Kulkarni, Sean Carroll, Lars Bildsten, David Spergel, Karl Gebhardt, and John Johnson.

Fiona Harrison
Fiona Harrison discussing the profound impact that X-ray astronomy has had on our understanding of the universe, made possible because of space telescopes such as NuSTAR.
Scott Tremaine
Scott Tremaine teaching the audience how to answer the question, "is the solar system stable?" Correct response: "Probably, but we can't know for sure because planetary orbits are chaotic!"
Mario Livio
Mario Livio engaging the audience with well-researched, fascinating stories from his latest book Brilliant Blunders.
Shri Kulkarni
Shri Kulkarni sharing his innovative approach to making new discoveries in observational astronomy.
Sean Carroll
Sean Carroll conveying the mystery of why the universe begins in a low entropy state.
Lars Bildsten
Lars Bildsten explaining how core collapse supernova can generate gravitational waves.
David Spergel
David Spergel describing cosmic microwave background fluctuations.

Past Lecture Series

Prior to the Russell Frank series, guest speakers hosted through the University Forum included esteemed scientists Roger Blandford, Raja GuhaThakurta, Doug Lin, Mario Livio, and James Stone.