Newswise — Jan. 14, 2016 (Waterloo, Ontario, Canada) – Neutron stars are a celestial gift to scientists. These incredibly dense collapsed stars act as very precise cosmic beacons that help shed light on some of the most challenging problems in modern physics.

On Feb. 3, join astrophysicist Victoria Kaspi as she explains how these distant lighthouses help astronomers study the origins of the universe, the very nature of matter, and more.

Kaspi’s fascinating and accessible lecture, titled “The Cosmic Gift of Neutron Stars,” is part of the Perimeter Institute Public Lecture Series, and will be webcast live Feb. 3 at 7 PM EST on the Perimeter Institute website and via partner organizations.

“I love understanding,” says Kaspi. “I love when a puzzle suddenly comes together. And it’s nice to be able to share that kind of discovery.”

Kaspi’s research consists of using radio and x-ray astronomy techniques to study rapidly rotating, highly magnetized neutron stars. She has done significant work involving radio pulsars and magnetars – the most highly magnetized objects in the known universe. More recently she had begun working to understand Fast Radio Bursts, a newly recognized astrophysical phenomenon involving few-millisecond radio bursts of unknown origin.

A professor of physics at McGill University, Kaspi holds the Lorne Trottier Chair in Astrophysics and Cosmology, and a Canada Research Chair in Observational Astrophysics. She is also the Director of the newly created McGill Space Institute. Before joining the McGill faculty in 2000, Kaspi completed a BSc degree at McGill, as well as earning MA and PhD degrees from Princeton University. She has also held the Hubble Postdoctoral Fellowship at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory and California Institute of Technology, and was previously an Assistant Professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Following her talk, Kaspi will answer questions from the online and in-house audience – including questions submitted prior to and during the talk via Facebook and Twitter (using the hashtag #piLIVE). Questions are welcomed from everyone – aspiring scientific explorers, school classes, physics and chemistry buffs, and general science enthusiasts.

Click here to sign up for a reminder to tune-in to the live webcast.

View past PI Public Lectures and events, and find further details about PI’s research, training, and outreach activities at

________________________________________LIVE WEBCAST DETAILS• What: Victoria Kaspi, The Cosmic Gift of Neutron Stars• When: Wednesday, Feb. 3, 7 pm EST • Where: Live at Perimeter Institute, webcast online at http://www.perimeterinstitute.caClick here to sign up to receive an email reminder about the live webcast• Pose questions for Kaspi by tweeting @Perimeter using the hashtag #piLIVE• More info:

ABOUT PERIMETER INSTITUTEPerimeter Institute is the world’s largest research hub devoted to theoretical physics. The independent Institute was founded in 1999 to foster breakthroughs in the fundamental understanding of our universe, from the smallest particles to the entire cosmos. Research at Perimeter is motivated by the understanding that fundamental science advances human knowledge and catalyzes innovation, and that today’s theoretical physics is tomorrow’s technology. Located in the Region of Waterloo, the not-for-profit Institute is a unique public-private endeavour, including the Governments of Ontario and Canada, that enables cutting-edge research, trains the next generation of scientific pioneers, and shares the power of physics through award-winning educational outreach and public engagement.

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