2015 News

  • Doug Cowen, professor of physics and astronomy and astrophysics, and Gordana Tesic, a postdoctoral researcher, are members of a team of scientists that received the 2016 Breakthrough Prize in Fundamental Physics. Cowen and Tesic are members of the Sudbury Neutrino Observatory (SNO) that “resolved a problem of missing solar neutrinos. The SNO collaboration discovered that neutrinos generated in the core of the Sun change flavors – or “oscillate” – as they travel through space being detected on Earth.
  • Beatrice Bonga was one of the 50 invited participants in the ComSciCon Conference, selected from a pool of 970 applicants in all fields of science and engineering http://comscicon.com. The conference was held at the Microsoft NERD Center at MIT and focused on communicating complex and technical concepts to a broader audience. The article she wrote popularizing gravitational waves and LIGO appeared in the “SciTable” blog hosted by Nature.
  • Kohta Murase, assistant professor of physics and astronomy/astrophysics, has been selected for the Physical Society of Japan’s Award for the Encouragement of Young Physicists. This award is presented to young researchers who have made outstanding achievements in their early research careers. Dr. Murase will give an award lecture at the next Annual Meeting general assembly of the Society scheduled in March 2016.
  • Emily Grosholz is a philosopher of science and mathematics and has recently edited a special issue of Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics on time and cosmology. She is also a poet and will teach a three-day seminar on poetry and cosmology at a writers’ conference, Writing the Rockies, this summer. Here she reads three of her poems related to physics in a podcast from Zeeya Merali’s visit to the IGC. Blog post   Podcast
  • Donghui Jeong, assistant professor of astronomy and astrophysics and member of IGC, has been honored with the Outstanding Young Researcher Award from the Association of Korean Physicists in America. This award recognizes young Korean physicists working in North America who have the potential for making creative and substantive advances in their subfield of physics and achieving professional success as a physicist. Read more…
  • IGC is co-sponsoring this year’s Frontiers of Science Lecture Series entitled “100 Years after Einstein’s Greatest Discovery: New Science from General Relativity.” The series will consist of 6 public lectures, held on consecutive Saturdays in 100 Thomas Building at the University Park Campus.
    • January 24: “Understanding Einstein’s Greatest Discovery,” John Norton (Director, Center for Philosophy of Science, University of Pittsburgh)
    • January 31: “Sculpting the Universe,” David Weinberg (The Henry L. Cox Professor and Distinguished Professor of Mathematical
      and Physical Sciences, Ohio State)
    • February 7: “The Warped Side of the Universe,” Nergis Mavalvala (The Curtis and Kathleen Marble Professor of Astrophysics, MIT)
    • February 14: “Capturing the Birth Cries of Black Holes,” John Nousek (Director of Mission Operations at NASA’s SWIFT Satellite)
    • February 21: “Discovering Planets,” Jason Wright (Astronomy and Astrophysics, Penn State)
    • February 28: “Pushing Science Beyond Einstein,” Eugenio Bianchi (Physics, Penn State)
  • Main results of a recent paper by Abhay Ashtekar, Beatrice Bonga and Aruna Kesavan
    (Class. Quantum Grav. 32, 025004) were highlighted by the British IOP on their website
    CQGplus, PDF
  • Lucas Hackl has been selected to serve as the APS student representative on the Science and Human Rights Coalition of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). The coalition seeks to encourage the “science, engineering and health communities” to
    “embrace human rights as an area suitable for and deserving of robust inquiry, and become an influential voice in the defense of human rights.”
  • The IceCube 2014 discovery of a 2 PeV cosmic neutrino event (“Big Bird”) has been featured by APS as one of the Top 10 Physics News Stories in 2014.

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