David Spergel, the Charles A. Young Professor of Astronomy at Princeton University, is giving the Penn Humanities Forum lecture today at the Rainey Auditorium of the Penn Museum at 5pm. The title is "The Edges of the Visible Universe". Pre-registration is required. The event details are located at http://humanities.sas.upenn.edu/12-13/spergel.shtml.
Emeritus Professor of Physics Alfred K. Mann passed away on Jan. 13. Prof. Mann was one of the 3 original members of the Penn Experimental High Energy Physics group and played crucial roles in a number of neutrino physics experiments. His funeral will be held Wed., Jan 16th at 10:15am at the Bringhurst Funeral Home, West Laurel Hill cemetery in Bala Cynwyd.
A team of Penn researchers, including Prof. Randy Kamien, have shown that they can manipulate defects at the top of a stack of layers of liquid crystals using a physical template at the bottom of the crystals. Their template sheet might be used as a template to assemble other molecules or use heat to modify the template sheet and hence the pattern of defects in a subtle way rather than the use of electrical fields to modify the pattern of defects as is typically done.
On Tuesday, Dec. 11, the Fundamental Physics Prize Selection Committee announced that a group consisting of Charlie Kane, Laurens Molenkamp of the University of Wuerzburg in Germany, and Shoucheng Zhang of Stanford have won the 2013 Physics Frontier Prize. This makes them automatic nominees for the 2013 Fundamental Physics Prize of $3M to be announced on March 20, 2013 at CERN. The nomination is for work on "topological insulators".
Andrea Liu is one of five Penn faculty members to be named a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. Andrea was elected for distinguished contributions in theoretical physics, particularly for demonstrating that slow relaxation in many different systems can be viewed within a common framework called “jamming.”
Dr. Natalie Arkus has been selected for a Postdoctoral Fellowship for Academic Diversity to work in the department with Prof. Randy Kamien. This selection comes with the strongest support of the review and selection panels that went through the many well-qualified applications to the program.
View of the big spiral galaxy NGC 7689 taken during the science verification stage of testing of the Dark Energy Survey telescope and DECam.
Prof. Charlie Kane has been named the Class of 1965 Term Professor of Physics and Astronomy.
The Dark Energy Survey and DECam were formally dedicated in Chile on Nov. 9. The DES project is now accumulating data for Science Verification (SV) wherein images from the telescope are being transported to the National Center for Supercomputing Applications in Illinois, processed through the DES Data Management system and evaluated for utility in producing front-line science by the SV team. The SV team is co-lead by Prof. Gary Bernstein.