Device is incompatible to play the video
Wednesday, 30 November 1994, 12:00AM

A Star is Born

Professor Heather Couper

Our Galaxy – one of billions in the Universe – has created 200 thousand million stars alone, of which our Sun is one. But how does it do it? Where do the raw materials come from? And can we ever see it happening?

Fortunately, the answers are all around us, hidden in the aftermath of starbirth that colours our entire Universe.

Speaker_HeatherCouper2.jpg

Heather Couper was the Gresham Professor of Astronomy between 1993 and 1996.

After studying Astrophysics at Oxford University, Professor Couper ran the Greenwich Planetarium, and later became President of the British Astronomical Association and Gresham Professor of Astronomy. After presenting two TV series, she and two colleagues set up Pioneer Productions, now one of the leading factual TV companies in the UK. She was the producer of Universe and of the international award-winning programme Electric Skies.

On 2 June 1999, asteroid 3922 Heather was named in her honour.

At the time of her appointment to the Gresham Professorship in 1993, she wrote the following:

How did the universe being? Is there life elsewhere? What's a black hole? Every day, I'm asked questions like this - questions ostensibly about astronomy, but which serve as marvellous springboards into all the other sciences. Because of this, I've always wanted a platform where I could address the "top twenty" questions about the Universe. But how - and where? Broadcasting? Writing? Too remote. But face-to-face lecturing? Absolutely. That's why I'm delighted to have been appointed Gresham Professor of Astronomy, in order to have the opportunity, in Sir Thomas Gresham's words, to explain - as best I can - the "new learning" in the field of the sciences.

All of Professor Couper's lectures can be found here.


Read More
Read Less
Related Future Lectures
Related Past Lectures
WATCHED
Part of a series

Antibiotic Resistance: Calling on Citizens to Help Tackle the Problem

Professor Jacqueline McGlade
Tuesday, 25 September 2018 - 6:00PM
WATCHED
Part of a series

Ultra-Compact Objects: Astronomy with Gravitational Waves

Professor Joseph Silk FRS
Wednesday, 3 October 2018 - 1:00PM
WATCHED
Part of a series

Epidemics, Pandemics and How To Control Them

Professor Chris Whitty
Wednesday, 10 October 2018 - 6:00PM
WATCHED
Part of a series

How Natural is Natural? Historical Perspective on Wildlife and the Environment in England

Professor Tom Williamson
Wednesday, 17 October 2018 - 6:00PM
WATCHED
Part of a series

It from Bit: The Science of Information

Professor Richard Harvey
Tuesday, 23 October 2018 - 6:00PM
WATCHED
Part of a series

Dark Matters

Professor Joseph Silk FRS
Wednesday, 24 October 2018 - 1:00PM
WATCHED

Climate Change: A Defining Challenge for the 21st Century

Dame Julia Slingo FRS
Thursday, 14 June 2018 - 6:00PM
WATCHED
Part of a series

Who's to Blame for Britain's Floods?

Professor Carolyn Roberts
Thursday, 31 May 2018 - 6:00PM
WATCHED
Part of a series

Media Reporting of Medical Advances: Helpful or Misleading?

Professor Martin Elliott
Wednesday, 23 May 2018 - 6:00PM
WATCHED
Part of a series

Facts Matter, But They Aren't Enough: Science, Faith and Meaning in Life

Professor Alister McGrath
Tuesday, 8 May 2018 - 1:00PM
WATCHED
Part of a series

Air Pollution: Its Impact on Health and Possible Solutions

Professor Chris Whitty
Wednesday, 25 April 2018 - 6:00PM
WATCHED

The Philosophy of Time: Does Physics Have The Last Word?

Professor Raymond Tallis
Tuesday, 10 April 2018 - 6:00PM
WATCHED

Is there anybody out there?

Professor Heather Couper
Friday, 29 March 1996 - 12:00AM
WATCHED

Big Bang to Big Crunch

Professor Heather Couper
Friday, 1 March 1996 - 12:00AM
WATCHED

Quasars and Exploding Galaxies

Professor Heather Couper
Friday, 26 January 1996 - 12:00AM
WATCHED

How Big is Space?

Professor Heather Couper
Friday, 17 November 1995 - 12:00AM
WATCHED

Exploring the Milky Way

Professor Heather Couper
Friday, 20 October 1995 - 12:00AM
WATCHED

Black Holes: The End of Space and Time

Professor Heather Couper
Friday, 17 February 1995 - 12:00AM
WATCHED

What is it about Cocaine that makes it addictive?

Dr William Harrop-Griffiths
Monday, 6 February 2017 - 1:55PM
WATCHED

The Role of Collaboration in Nature and its Link to Success

Professor Steve Jones
Tuesday, 31 January 2017 - 6:59PM
WATCHED

The Offspring of Semi-Female Mimics in Ruffs

Professor Steve Jones
Tuesday, 31 January 2017 - 6:58PM
WATCHED

What Is The Advantage To The Flowers That Are 'Orchid-Mimics'?

Professor Steve Jones
Tuesday, 31 January 2017 - 6:56PM
WATCHED

An Interesting Fact About Female Swordtail Fish

Professor Steve Jones
Tuesday, 31 January 2017 - 6:55PM
WATCHED

The Sideways Motion of a Ponytail

Professor Raymond E. Goldstein
Wednesday, 9 November 2016 - 6:58PM