Planet vs. Dwarf Planet? Presenting at RASC Mississauga

The title slide for my talk at the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada, Mississauga Faction.

The title slide for my talk at the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada, Mississauga Faction.

On Friday the 24th of January 2014, I gave a public talk to the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada, Mississauga Faction. I originally suggested I give a talk on my research, which is focused on black holes, however, the past president Randy Attwood indicated they had already invited my supervisor, Dr. Patrick Hall to talk about that. So I used it as an opportunity to develop a new public talk focussing on planets and dwarf planets, one that I had been wanting to build for a while but hadn’t had the motivation to do so.
I find the topic of ‘dwarf planet’ very interesting, specifically how it surrounds our beloved Pluto. Re-classification is the hallmark of science, as it indicates that people have discovered new things and therefore changed how they view a topic. Re-classifying (note, NOT demoting) Pluto only shows us that astronomers are still putting the puzzle pieces of the solar system together.
The talk I gave was based on a book I read called The Pluto Files: The Rise and Fall of America’s Favorite Planet written by Neil deGrasse Tyson. Dr. Tyson gives a fantastic account of how Pluto was found, and how it was re-classified in the infamous decision of 2006 by the International Astronomical Union (I.A.U.). Definitely check that book out.
Here are the full presentation slides (PDF) that I used for the talk, however, I also employed the help of two friends, Harrison Ruess and Ashley Carr, to video record the talk for me, which I’m currently editing for youtube.

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