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Michael J. I. Brown

Michael J. I. Brown

Associate professor, Monash University
I am an observational astronomer, studying how galaxies evolve over billions of years.

I was born and raised in Melbourne’s southeastern suburbs. My interest in astronomy began as a child, when the Voyager spacecraft visited the outer planets. I undertook my undergraduate and postgraduate studies at the University of Melbourne during the 1990s. For my PhD, I used (now antiquated) photographic plates to identify thousands of galaxies and measure their distribution in space.

In 2000 I joined the staff of the National Optical Astronomy Observatory, and started working on surveys of the distant Universe with large ground-based telescopes and satellites. In 2004 I was awarded Princeton University’s Henry Norris Russell Fellowship, and studied the growth of the most massive galaxies. Using thousands of galaxies in the constellation of Bootes, I found that the most massive galaxies have grown slowly over the past seven billion years, which is almost certainly due to mergers of galaxies.

Since 2007 I have been at Monash University’s School of Physics and Astronomy. I am measuring spectra of galaxies across the electromagnetic spectrum, which is useful for measuring the distances to galaxies, the luminosities of galaxies and how rapidly galaxies form stars. I am also using large astronomical surveys to measure how rapidly galaxies are growing, and how this growth compares to the growth of dark matter halos.

Looking at the universe through very different 'eyes'

Jan 22, 2018 11:39 am UTC| Insights & Views Science

We are bathed in starlight. During the day we see the Sun, light reflected off the surface of the Earth and blue sunlight scattered by the air. At night we see the stars, as well as sunlight reflected off the Moon and the...

Space Science Series

We can learn a lot from the changing night sky

Jan 07, 2017 01:10 am UTC| Science

You cannot feel or hear the world turning. It does not rumble through space. But you can see it turn with your own eyes every day and night. And, with patience, you can see Earth travel around the Sun. As the globe...

How to quickly spot dodgy science

Jan 04, 2017 05:00 am UTC| Science

I havent got time for science, or at least not all of it. I cannot read 19,000 astrophysics papers every year. No way. And I have little patience for bad science, which gets more media attention than it deserves. Even...

Trump has embraced pseudoscience and its deceptive tactics in a post-truth world

Dec 12, 2016 09:30 am UTC| Science Politics

As a scientist, I expect the Trump presidency to have a curious familiarity. Why? Because the relentless stream of falsehoods and character attacks of Trumps campaign mainstreamed disinformation tactics that biologists,...

Space Science Series

Less secrecy could help astronomy stop the bullying and harassment within its ranks

Nov 23, 2016 03:00 am UTC| Insights & Views Science

Shocking allegations of bullying, harassment and sexual assault at CSIROs Astronomy and Space Sciences (CASS) division were revealed on Sunday by the ABCs Background Briefing program. In CASS alone, the Radio National...

UFOs, climate change and missing airliners: how to separate fact from fiction

Jun 20, 2016 06:47 am UTC| Insights & Views

If youve been on social media then perhaps youve seen the Ancient Aliens meme; a wild-haired alien aficionado Giorgio A. Tsoukalos attributing all manner of things to aliens. Giorgio A. Tsoukalos is a well known...

1 

Economy

Australian bonds gain amid global equity sell-off; investors await RBA November meeting minutes

Australian government bonds gained across the curve during Asian session on Monday amid global equity sell-off. Sentiment deteriorated earlier on dovish comments from Federal Reserve Vice Chair Clarida. This weighed on...

Cryptocurrency Brief: Altcoins continue downtrend tracking Bitcoin, Salt Lending Holdings faces U.S. SEC probe over $50 mln token sale – Friday, November 16

BTC/USD: Bitcoin prices continued to downtrend for the third consecutive day, during late European session Friday, tracking pessimism from the United States Securities and Exchange Commissions (SEC) annual enforcement...

German bunds trade slightly lower after Eurozone October CPI meets market expectations

The German bunds traded slightly lower during afternoon session on the last trading day of the week Friday after the Eurozones consumer price inflation (CPI) for the month of Eurozone met market expectations, remaining...

Swedish krona likely to witness gradual uptrend vs euro on slower monetary policy normalization, says Commerzbank

The Swedish krona is expected to witness a gradual upward trend vs the euro, on expectations of a slower normalization in the countrys monetary policy, although the process is seen to happen at a rate faster than that in...

Bank Negara Malaysia likely to keep OPR unchanged at 3.25 pct for some time, says ANZ Research

Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) is expected to maintain its current accommodative stance and keep the Overnight Policy Rate (OPR) unchanged at 3.25 percent for some time, owing to expectations of a muted inflation in the...

Politics

Threats remain to US voting system – and voters' perceptions of reality

As the 2018 midterms proceed, there are still significant risks to the integrity of the voting system and information warfare continues to try to influence the American publics choices when they cast their ballots. On...

Let's not focus on graduate incomes when assessing the worth of education

The link between educational attainment and income has long been known. Now Australians have more information about what graduates earn from different universities and courses. A recent report shows graduates from NSW...

What image will define the 2018 election?

Every election has its iconic images. Or does it? There are standout images from previous campaigns. Barack Obamas Hope poster, with all its homages and parodies, is a classic example. George W. Bushs Mission...

US mid-term results: seven key issues and what they mean for the country's uncertain future

America has voted, the results are in, but the countrys future remains uncertain for now. Tuesdays Congressional mid-term elections were billed rightly as among the most important in US history. Decades of widening...

Democrats take House at US midterm elections, but Republicans keep Senate; Labor well ahead in Victoria

US midterm elections were held today. All 435 House seats and 35 of the 100 Senators were up for election. Democrats were defending 26 Senators, including some states that Trump won by big margins in 2016, and Republicans...

Science

Novel approach brings African scientists closer to a malaria vaccine

Malaria is still a major problem in Africa. There are over 200 million clinical cases each year and approximately half a million deaths. There are different ways in which malaria can be controlled. Preventive measures...

Dramatic galaxy collision filled the Milky Way with stars, astronomers discover

Imagine trying to map out your home town using only information you could gather from your window. Even with a pair of binoculars youd find it a difficult task. Mapping out our own galaxy, the Milky Way, is a similarly...

How thoughtful, content-rich tutorials can help science students learn

Learning is not a spectator sport. Students need to make what they learn a part of their everyday lives. Tutorials are an excellent way to achieve this at university level. When theyre properly designed, tutorials can be...

Curious Kids: If a star explodes, will it destroy Earth?

This is an article from Curious Kids, a series for children. The Conversation is asking kids to send in questions theyd like an expert to answer. All questions are welcome: find out how to enter at the bottom. You might...

Explainer: what any country can and can't do in Antarctica, in the name of science

Antarctica is owned by no one, but there are plenty of countries interested in this frozen island continent at the bottom of the Earth. While there are some regulations on who can do what there, scientific research has...

Technology

‘Fortnite’ Latest News & Update: Humiliates ‘God of War’ & ‘Red Dead Redemption’ in Video Game Awards

Fortnite might be the most popular video game in the world right now but no one can be faulted for saying that it is not Game of the Year material. However, it would appear that the judges over at the Golden Joystick...

Radeon RX 590 Latest News & Update: ‘Resident Evil 2’ & ‘DMC 5’ Included in Bundle

AMD is betting big on the Radeon RX 590 GPU by bundling it with several games that are not exactly what anyone would expect to come for free in this fashion. Basically, the company is offering three AAA titles for free...

Nvidia Latest News & Update: Cryptocurrency Failure Leads to Stock Nosedive, Lost The Gamble or Bad Luck?

Nvidia recently released its revenue report for the third quarter and it signaled the end of an era for the company. The cryptocurrency boom essentially led to an unexpected boost in its sales of GPUs last year, which led...

iOS Jailbreak Latest News & Update: iOS 12.1 Successfully Bypassed by Tencent KeenLab Researcher

A Tencent Keenlab researcher recently confirmed on Twitter that his jailbreak method successfully bypassed the latest iOS 12.1 that is running devices of XS MAX, Apple, and iPhone. Named Liang Chen, the researcher said...

'Fallout 76' Latest News & Update: Titanic Failure as Expected, Burning Reviews Paint Apocalyptic Reception

Fallout 76 was doomed from the start and it would seem that everyone could see this except for Bethesda. The game was as confusing to itself as it was to fans and this was the least of its problems. The result is the...
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November 19 02:30 UTC Released

THGDP Growth YY

Actual

3.3 %

Forecast

4.2 %

Previous

4.6 %

November 18 23:50 UTC Released

JPTrade Balance Total Yen

Actual

-449.3 Bln JPY

Forecast

-70 Bln JPY

Previous

139.6 Bln JPY

January 31 00:00 UTC 420793420793m

ARAnnual Primary Balance*

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Forecast

2016 bln ARS

Previous

Bln AR bln ARS

January 31 00:00 UTC 420793420793m

ARAnnual Primary Balance*

Actual

Forecast

2016 bln ARS

Previous

Bln AR bln ARS

January 22 19:00 UTC 432613432613m

ARTrade Balance

Actual

Forecast

Previous

-1541 %

January 31 00:00 UTC 420793420793m

ARAnnual Primary Balance*

Actual

Forecast

2016 bln ARS

Previous

Bln AR bln ARS

January 22 19:00 UTC 432613432613m

ARTrade Balance

Actual

Forecast

Previous

-1541 %

January 31 00:00 UTC 420793420793m

ARAnnual Primary Balance*

Actual

Forecast

2016 bln ARS

Previous

Bln AR bln ARS

January 31 00:00 UTC 420793420793m

ARAnnual Primary Balance*

Actual

Forecast

2016 bln ARS

Previous

Bln AR bln ARS

January 31 00:00 UTC 420793420793m

ARAnnual Primary Balance*

Actual

Forecast

2016 bln ARS

Previous

Bln AR bln ARS

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