Sabrina Berger

Meet Sabrina Berger from McGill University!

Fast radio bursts (FRB) are short, sub-second bursts that are some of the brightest objects in the radio sky when they go off. These bursts’ astrophysical origins are still unknown. Last year an FRB was localized to a magnetar, an extremely dense and magnetized stellar remnant, within the Milky Way. Localizing FRBs can narrow down their potential origins, a first step towards understanding what causes them. The Canadian Hydrogen Intensity Mapping Experiment (CHIME) located in British Columbia, has discovered more than one thousand FRBs, orders of magnitude more than previous instruments. CHIME Outriggers is an upcoming experiment to use the original CHIME instrument along with other dishes spaced up to thousands of kilometers apart to create better localization capabilities. Sabrina’s research focuses on using Global Positioning Satellites (GPS) to help remove errors in localization of FRBs caused by the telescopes being located at different places on Earth. Hopefully, we’ll be able to localize many more FRBs to within their home galaxies in the next few years with CHIME Outriggers!



A dispersed (bottom panel) and dedispersed (top panel) spectra of the most prolific fast radio burst signal. This FRB repeats which has allowed us to observe it with various telescope arrays. Credit: Breakthrough Listen



We are pleased to announce that your CASCA Graduate Student Committee is launching a new seminar series entitled CaTS — Canadian Telescope Seminars. The goal of these quarterly seminars is to highlight the opportunities provided to Canadian graduate students by the many and diverse astronomical observatories located in Canada or heavily involved in Canadian astronomy. During each session, an observatory will present its telescopes, instruments, and personnel. 

Since the goal is to bolster graduate student involvement at these institutions, the observatories will focus on how graduate students can implicate themselves in the observatory through research projects and/or observation time proposals. Unless otherwise noted, the sessions take place at 3 PM EST.


Zoom info:


Date (M/D/Y) Observatory Youtube Link PDF Link
03/10/2021 Canada-France-Hawai’i Telescope (CFHT) CFHT.pdf
04/28/2021 James Clark Maxwell Telescope (JCMT)–iiCQ JCMT.pdf
05/19/2021 Square Kilometer Array (SKA) SKA.pdf
06/16/2021 Canadian Space Telescope (CASTOR) N/A ————
07/14/2021 Gemini Observatory N/A due to technical difficulties Gemini.pdf
10/27/2021 James Web Space Telescope (JWST) JWST.pdf
11/17/2021 Canadian Hydrogen Intensity Mapping Experiment (CHIME) CHIME-FRB.pdf & CHIME-Pulars.pdf