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U Honors Graduate Coordinator Bryce Nelson with Online Excellence Staff Award

Bryce Nelson

The COVID-19 pandemic forced faculty, students, and staff at the university to shift in one week—literally over spring break in March—from traditional in-person lectures and student outreach to Zoom calls and online testing modules. Bryce Nelson, graduate coordinator for the Physics & Astronomy Department, rose to the challenge and has been awarded the U’s 2020 Online Excellence Staff Award by Dan Reed, senior vice president for Academic Affairs. Join us in congratulating her!

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Gamma-ray Scientists Help Bring Distant Stars into Focus

Blue stars

Scientists in the VERITAS Collaboration have measured the angular diameter of stars using Stellar Intensity Interferometry for the first time in nearly 50 years, and demonstrated both improvements to the sensitivity of the technique and its scalability using digital electronics. Led by astronomers from the Center for Astrophysics | Harvard & Smithsonian and the University of Utah, VERITAS (Very Energetic Radiation Imaging Telescope Array System) scientists measured the angular diameters of Beta Canis Majoris—a blue giant star located 500 light-years from the sun—and Epsilon Orionis—a blue supergiant star located 2,000 light-years from the sun.

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Largest 3D Map of the Universe Ever Created

Universe header

The Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) released today a comprehensive analysis of the largest three-dimensional map of the universe ever created. Cosmologist and professor Kyle Dawson of the University of Utah's Physics & Astronomy Department led the team announcing today’s results. At the heart of the new results are detailed measurements of more than two million galaxies and quasars covering 11 billion years of cosmic time.

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Pioneering Method Reveals Dynamic Structure in HIV

Image of Virus

Viruses are scary. They invade our cells like invisible armies, and each type brings its own strategy of attack. While viruses devastate communities of humans and animals, scientists scramble to fight back. Yet even the most sophisticated technology requires that the sample be frozen and immobilized to get the highest resolution. Now, physicists from the University of Utah have pioneered a way of imaging virus-like particles in real time, at room temperature, with impressive resolution.

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U Physicists Find Technique that Offers Improved Resolution and Characterization of Perovskite-Based Photovoltaics

Andrey Rogachev and Kevin Davenport

Perovskite-based solar cells are promising alternatives to traditional silicon cells; however, the current research only offers a limited understanding of these complex devices since the electron transport within the device is physically difficult to probe. But U physicists Andrey Rogachev and Kevin Davenport have adapted a spectroscopic method to capture a “big picture” look at the carrier dynamics within a perovskite-based solar cell.

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Last Updated: 7/10/19