Sunday, 9 November 2014

Talking about star clusters in Copenhagen

The absence of posts this week was because I've been taking a break from doing research at my desk and instead I've been at a conference to discuss research with other scientists studying star clusters. The conference was "The Early Life of Stellar Clusters: Formation and Dynamics" and was held in Copenhagen, Denmark, a really beautiful city.

Copenhagen, very pretty (albeit cold)

Conferences are important in science because they allow scientists distributed all over the world to come together and discuss the current state of research with other scientists. This can be particularly important if you work in a small field (such as astrophysics) where the world's experts are spread all around the world. There can be lots of debates and arguments, discussions with collaborators, as well as opportunities to start new collaborations with people you meet.

This meeting attracted about 50 people who all study different aspects of star clusters and who have come together to discuss them. Most of the attendees have given a presentation to the group, including myself (I gave my talk on the first day and was able to relax after that). I talked about my recent work on an OB association called Cygnus OB2 (more on that in a future post) and I think it was well received.

It was a great conference and I'm very grateful to the organisers for putting it together (and for giving me the opportunity to present my work!). The meeting has given me lots of ideas for future projects, has opened the door to future collaborations, and helped develop some existing projects. I'm looking forward to the next conference already!

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