• Physics Table with the Chesley Lecturer

    Please join us for a lunchtime chat with Dr. Gabriela González for this week’s Physics table.  We’ll do it Tuesday, January 18th at noon.  It will be a virtual lunch, so use this link.

  • Chesley Lecture in Physics

    Dr. Gaby Gonzalez from Louisiana State University will join us virtually THIS WEEK on Monday and Tuesday, January 17th and 18th for the annual Chesley Lecture.  She will meet with various student groups, research groups, and classes in addition to giving a public lecture on Tuesday, January 17th at 7:00 pm.  Watch the lecture from this link!

    Einstein, gravitational waves, black holes and other matters
    More than a hundred years ago, Einstein predicted that there were ripples in the fabric of space-time traveling at the speed of light: gravitational waves. On September 14 2015, the LIGO  detectors in Hanford, Washington and Livingston, Louisiana in the US registered for the first time ever a loud gravitational wave signal traveling through Earth, created more than a billion years ago by the merger of two black holes. A spectacular signal was detected by LIGO and the Virgo detector in Europe  in 2017, produced by the collision of two neutron stars giving birth to a black hole, generating also electromagnetic waves (light!) detected by many telescopes and helping us understand the origin of gold. In only a few years from the first detection, there are now than 90 discovered signals from mergers of black holes and/or neutron stars – this is the era of gravitational wave astronomy.  We will describe the history and details of the observations, and the gravity-bright  future of the field.
  • Graders needed!

    Hi, all–

    Email Trenne if you’re interested in picking up some grading hours.  We need one more grader to help with Barry’s intro course, and one grader/observer to help with Cindy’s astro 110 class (you should have some astro experience for this).  Please do so ASAP so we can get you set up and connected with the instructor.  Thank you!


  • Upcoming comps presentations

    Larry Donahue
    Monday, January 24 2022
    8:30 am on Zoom

    The modern baseball pitch: A physical perspective

    Even though the sport of baseball is a century and a half old, the motion of a baseball in the flight from a
    pitcher’s hand to home plate is not fully understood. With the introduction of Major League Baseball (MLB)’s
    Hawk-Eye StatCast system for the 2020 season, the league tracks precise data relating to a pitch’s position.
    Using publicly available data from Hawk-Eye StatCast, previously known force laws, and recent research on
    the effect of seams on the flight of a baseball, I derive equations of motion for a pitched ball and use them to
    create a model depicting the flight of a baseball. Before the pitch, I also examine the effect of various
    substances on a pitched ball and derive an equation to account for adhesive substances popular in MLB prior to
    recent rule enforcement.

  • REU at Cornell

    BTI 2022 Intern Update
    Now Accepting Applications!
    2022 Research Experience for Undergraduates Program at BTI & Cornell University

    Greetings from BTI,

    The 2022 Summer Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) at the Boyce Thompson Institute and Cornell University is now seeking applicants interested in a variety of plant biology related opportunities!

    For the past 20 years, BTI has been hosting a summer research experience providing an outstanding student-development program that focuses on training and inspiring the next generation of scientists. Follow the link to learn more about our program and the variety of projects we offer in plant genetics and genomics, bioinformatics, biochemistry and integrated plant science technology.

    Located on the Cornell University campus, BTI is a world leader in plant research and is dedicated to developing innovative solutions to feed a growing population, while protecting the environment and enhancing human health.

    2022 REU Application

    2022 BTI Research Experience for Undergraduates Poster!

  • Summer programs at U Penn or Wash

    Center for Engineering Mechanobiology (CEMB) Undergraduates Expanding Boundaries Summer 2022 Program

    The Center for Engineering Mechanobiology seeks motivated undergraduate students from diverse backgrounds for its Undergraduate Summer Research Experience Program. This is a 10-week, on-campus program at the University of Pennsylvania and Washington University in St. Louis. Students are matched to projects within research groups based on their interests and educational background. Many projects are interdisciplinary and provide opportunities to develop research skills in the physical and biological sciences as well as engineering. Students develop practical skills in doing science: collaborating, designing experiments, collecting and analyzing data, and communicating results. Other aspects of the program complement the laboratory experience and are oriented toward professional development in broader scientific and career skills: seminars, journal clubs, professional skills and career workshops (research ethics, innovation, and technology transfer for instance). See attached flyer.


    molecular biology, cell and tissue mechanics in plants and animals, bioengineering, biochemistry and biophysics, computational biology,  biomedical devices, nanoscale science and engineering


    Dates: May 31 – August 5, 2022 (10-weeks)


    • University of Pennsylvania (PENN) in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
    • Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri (WUSTL)

    The program offers:

    • A competitive stipend
    • Summer housing
    • Travel assistance (if eligible)
    • Social activities (museums, bbqs, baseball games)

     Application deadline: February 1, 2022

    Learn more and apply online

    Please feel free to contact Ms. Patricia Widder (WUSTL) at pwidder9876@wustl.edu or Dr. Annie Jeong (PENN) at annjeong@seas.upenn.edu with additional questions.


  • Physics grad program at UMass Lowell

    Graduate Physics program at UMass Lowell:  While our nominal deadline for Ph.D. applications is Jan 15, we will be giving full consideration to applications received by Feb 1 this year. Candidates who were unable to take the GRE due to the pandemic can request a waiver by emailing our Graduate coordinator with their application ID.

    Here’s an electronic version of our 36-page brochure Merging Science with Technology available on our webpage, that describes research activities in the Department of Physics and Applied Physics at the University of Massachusetts Lowell.

    Our campus is located twenty-five miles northwest of Boston, with a student population of over 18,000. We have 30 full-time faculty, approximately 75 graduate students and 100 undergraduate majors in the Department of Physics and Applied Physics. The Department has external grant and contract funding of over $10 million per year. Faculty research areas include advanced materials, astronomy and astrophysics, biomedical optics, biophysics, cosmology, medical physics, electromagnetic metamaterials, nanoscience and laser applications, nuclear physics (both fundamental and applied), photonics, plasma physics, quantum information, radiological health physics, soft condensed matter, space physics and terahertz technology. We are very excited about the strong cohort of researchers we have hired in the last few years who are adding new directions to our research strengths. More information is available on our website.

    We are featured in the AIP website www.gradschoolshopper.com. Information on graduate schools applications and admissions are available.  Online application forms

    Please feel free to contact me or Prof. Viktor Podolskiy, our Graduate Program Coordinator (Viktor_Podolskiy@uml.edu) if you or your students have any questions about our programs.

    With best regards

    Partha Chowdhury (he/him)
    Professor and Chair, Department of Physics and Applied Physics

    Director, Radiation Laboratory
    University of Massachusetts Lowell