The following students were honored at the recent College of Basic Sciences Honors Convocation:
Keen-Morris Award - Mary Dean, James Hostetter, Chris Peeler
Distinguished Research and Public Service Award - Zach Cummings
Hussey Award for Outstanding Research - Richard Strope
Outstanding Senior, College of Basic Sciences - James Hostetter
Joseph Giaime has been elected a Fellow of the American Physical Society (APS).
LSU Professors Receive Grant to Study Gamma-Ray Bursts - Gabrielle Allen and Erik Schnetter
Nine Physics & Astronomy faculty members have been named to the List of LSU's 2009 Rainmakers, the 100 most productive researchers and scholars at the University: Michael L. Cherry, Jonathan P. Dowling, Jerry P. Draayer, Gabriela Gonzalez, Mark Jarrell, E. Ward Plummer, Bradley E. Schaefer, Kenneth J. Schafer, and John P. Wefel.
Huiheng Medical, Inc., a Chinese company, plans to build a plant in Baton Rouge to manufacture radiation treatment devices. The company's Whole Body Gamma Knife is already used to treat cancer patients across the world. One of the reasons cited by the company for choosing Baton Rouge was LSU's Medical Physics program.
RESEARCH NEWS! - Edward Zganjar, and his UNIRIB colleagues, were recently awarded $1.78 million to complete the construction of a new type of mass separator and place it on-line to the radioactive ion-beam accelerator at the Holifield Radioactive Ion Beam Facility at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
Dr. Kenneth Hogstrom is featured in an article in the Baton Rouge Business Report, "Hitting the Target".
RESEARCH NEWS! - LIGO Listens for Gravitational Echoes of the Birth of the Universe - Results set new limits on gravitational waves that could have come from the Big Bang, and begin to constrain current theories about universe formation.
Edward Seidel was named Interim Assistant Director for the National Science Foundation’s Mathematical and Physical Sciences (MPS) Directorate.
RESEARCH NEWS! - The journal Classical and Quantum Gravity highlights a community paper called "Testing Gravitational-Wave Searches with Numerical Relativity Waveforms: Results from the First Numerical Injection Analysis (NINJA) Project" with authors from many institutions, including several current and former members of LSU's Relativity Group. The article represents the first large-scale collaborative work between the data analysis and numerical relativity communities towards measuring and recognizing the gravitational waves expected in the merger of a binary black hole system in the data from detectors in operation (e.g., LIGO). For several years, the numerical relativity community has been working towards obtaining such waveforms - which required constructing complex codes implementing Einstein's equations - while the data analysis community has developed a series of refined tools to analyze the data from interferometric detectors. This article presents the first cohesive effort to adopt the knowledge gained through the simulations and study its incorporation in data analysis pipelines, measuring efficiency in simulated gaussian data."
A big thank you goes to Scott and Susan Brodie, who have made a gift of $200,000 to the LSU Foundation to establish the Scott and Susan Brodie Science Honors Scholar Awards and the Scott and Susan Brodie Professorship in Physics and Astronomy. Additional matching funds from the Louisiana Board of Regents raise the total value of their gift to $260,000. The Department very much appreciates their generous support.
A delegation from LSU comprised of Dean Kevin Carman, Ward Plummer, Rongying Jin, and Jiandi Zhang traveled to China recently to sign an agreement with the Institute of Physics in Beijing (part of the Chinese Academy of Sciences) for a dual Ph.D. degree program in materials science. The agreement creates what is believed to be the first dual Ph.D. program between the U.S. and China.
Joel Tohline has been invited to serve a 3-year term on the National Science Foundation's Directorate of Math & Physical Sciences Advisory Committee (MPSAC). The MPSAC is the only official advisory body to the Divisions within the Math and Physical Sciences Directorate, and the Directorate relies on the AC for both high level advice and connection to the community. More information on the MPSAC can be found here.
Luis Lehner has been appointed to the Selection Committee of the Nicholas Metropolis Prize of the American Physical Society. The prize is awarded every year for the best dissertation in computational physics. Lehner was the first recipient of the prize in 1999.
The conference Profs. Rodolfo Gambini (University of the Republic, Uruguay) and Jorge Pullin are organizing in Uruguay in October has been decleared "of national interest" by the government in Uruguay. Signatures at the bottom of the document are those of the Secretary of State, the Secretary of Education, and the President of the Republic.
Luis Lehner will be one of the participants in the invitation-only workshop "Enabling Science Discoveries through Visual Exploration", organized by the National Science Foundation in Washington, D.C. on September 27-28, 2007.
Two papers by Physics and Astronomy Professors Manuel Tiglio and Peter Diener with Research Associate, Eric Schnetter, and by former LSU graduate student and PhD graduate Gioel Calabrese (currently in England) have been chosen among the highlights of 2006/2007 by the
Editorial Board of the Journal "Classical and Quantum Gravity", published by the Institute of Physics of the UK. Papers published by members of the LSU Relativity Group have made the highlights list for the last six years.
The proceedings of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific conference series entitled "The Future of Photometric, Spectrophotometric and Polarimetric Standardization" that took place in Blankenberge, Belgium was dedicated to Arlo U. Landolt in recognition of his life work of setting standars in photometry.
RESEARCH NEWS ! - John DiTusa and a group of international colleagues have discovered an unusual magnetic material that has major implications in Quantum Physics. Their findings were published online July 26, 2007 by Science in an article entitled "Mesoscopic Phase Coherence in a Quantum Spin Fluid."
Jonathan Dowling was elected Fellow of the Optical Society of America.
Jorge Pullin has been named a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). In addition, he also has been elected corresponding member of the Mexican Academy of Sciences (Academia Mexicana de Ciencias), a non-profit organization comprising over 1,800 distinguished Mexican scientists.
Jerry Draayer - Distinguished Research Master by the LSU Council on Research
Richard Kurtz - LSU Distinguished Faculty Award
Michael Cherry - LSU Alumni Association Faculty Excellence Award
Juhan Frank - Tiger Athletic Foundation President's Award
Jonathan Dowling has been appointed to the Oak Ridge Associated Universities National Security Experts Team.
LSU Professor Receives Award for Work with International Neutrino Experiment Thomas Kutter has received an Outstanding Junior Investivator Award from the Department of Energy for his work on the large-scale T2K neutrino oscillation project in Japan in hopes of solving neutrino mysteries. - - posted August 22, 2007
Dr. Polad Shikhaliev has just received a $389K NIH grant beginning June 1, 2007 entitled "In-vivo intravascular autoradiography with storage phosphor detector". - - posted
Prof. Bradley Schaefer has just won a share of the 2007 Gruber Cosmology Prize as a particiapant in the discovery that the expansion of the Universe is accelerating, not decelerating as expected. By measuring the brightnesses of a large number of very distant supernovae, two competing teams -- the Supernova Cosmology Project and the High-z Supernova Search team -- simultaneously determined that the expansion of our Universe is accelerating, a surprising result since confirmed by several independent methods. The conclusion is that approximately 70% of the mass/energy of our Universe is due to a previously unknown 'force' now called 'Dark Energy'. The $500,000 prize money will be shared amongst the co-authors of the original papers, with the award ceremony being held on 7 September 2007 at Trinity College in Cambridge. Past winners of the Gruber Cosmology Prize are John Mather and the COBE team, Martin Rees, Vera Rubin, and Allan Sandage. The Gruber Award is described in more detail here. - - posted August 7, 2007
Profs. Jonathan Dowling (PI) and Hwang Lee (Co-PI), have just received a $600K grant from the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency's (DARPA) Strategic Technology Office (STO) Quantum Sensors Program (QSP).
The objective of QSP is to develop pratical sensors operating outside of a controlled laboratory environment that exploit non-classical photon states to surpass classical sensor resolution. The Phase I grant has a duration of 18 months, and could lead to additional phase grants. Co-investigators include scientists from the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Raytheon Corporation, and MathSense Analytics, all well as collaborators from the University of Calgary and the University of Toronto.
Former LSU Physics undergraduate, Barrett Deris, has received an NSF Graduate Fellowship. Deris is currently a graduate student at Univ. of California-San Diego.
LSU Physics & Astronomy graduate student, Enrique Pazos, won the prize for the best graduate student presentation at the 3rd Gulf Coast Gravity Conference held at the University of Alabama-Huntsville.
The SPIRES bibliographical service at Stanford University has compiled a list of the most cited articles of all time to appear in the GR-QC preprint repository. This repository contains almost all papers in gravitation starting in 1992. Jorge Pullin's paper with Dr. Rodolfo Gambini, "Nonstandard Optics in Quantum Space-time", cited 240 times, is the 21st most cited paper ever in the repository.
LSU Professor Hosts "Ask the Astronomer" Event Observatory - Topic will be antimatter, but all space related questions welcomed.
LSU Professor Named LIGO Head - Joseph A. Giaime, Associate Professor of Physics and Astronomy at LSU, was recently named head of the Laser Interferometer Gravitational Wave Observatory, or LIGO, based in Livingston, LA.