Astronomer to Present on Laniakea Supercluster at ‘Imiloa

October 7, 2017, 9:00 AM HST
* Updated October 9, 10:09 AM
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Dr. Tully (right) with Nāwaʻa Napoleon. Courtesy of ‘Imiloa Astronomy Center.

Astronomer Brent Tully will give a talk exploring “Our Home Laniakea, the Supercluster of Galaxies”at the ‘Imiloa Astronomy Center planetarium on Friday, Oct. 13, at 7 p.m.

Dr. Tully, an astronomer at the University of Hawai‘i’s Institute For Astronomy, helped identify the supercluster of galaxies we live in named “Laniakea,” which means “immense heavens” in Hawaiian.

Superclusters are dense groups of galaxies interconnected by a web of cosmic filaments. The discovery of these phenomena has clarified the boundaries of our galactic neighborhood, defining new connections between various galaxy clusters in the local universe.

Tully led an international team of astronomers who defined the shape and scope of the Laniakea supercluster. It was named by Nāwaʻa Napoleon, Dean of Arts & Sciences at Kapiʻolani Community College, in honor of Polynesian navigators who used celestial navigation techniques to travel the seas.

Dr. Tully’s talk will explore the immense nature of superclusters and the cosmic effects of their gravitational forces, as well as how they are grouped throughout the observable universe.


Originally from Vancouver, Canada, Dr. Tully received his PhD in astronomy from the University of Maryland in 1972. After traveling the world for a year, he accepted a postdoctoral position in Marseille, France. In 1975, he joined the faculty at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa where he has taught for the last 42 years. Tully is the recipient of several local, national and international awards, including the Viktor Ambartsumian International Prize and the Gruber Cosmology Prize.


Admission tickets for the event are $10 general, $8 for ‘Imiloa members. Member level discounts apply. For more information, visit or call (808) 932-8901.

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