• Winter Break fellowships

    The Kolenkow Reitz Fellowship  provides research support for Carleton students working with non-Carleton science and math faculty at another institution during the summer or over winter break.  These research opportunities are intended to encourage Carleton students’ development as scientists and their exploration of mathematics, statistics, and the sciences as a possible career.  Applications are now being accepted for Winter Break fellowships.  Application deadline is 5 PM Monday, October 11, 2021.

  • Welcome back lunch!

    All PHAS students, faculty, and staff are invited to a welcome back lunch on Tuesday, Sept 21st (TOMORROW!) out in the south amphitheater in front of Anderson Hall.  Please come meet fellow students and department folks IN PERSON and have a pizza lunch on the department.  We’ll do it during common time (noon to 1 pm).

  • Research with Jay?

    There may be space in Jay’s research group for another student or two.  If you’re interested and not currently working with Jay, please fill out this form.

  • Grad school info

    The LS-PAC MODELS Center Presents:

    Stand Out to Get In: Demystifying the Graduate School Application Process

    A two-part webinar for STEM undergraduate students

    Click here to register
    • Session 1: Friday, September 24, 2021, 12:30-2:30 PM CST – Panel Session with Grad Students and PhDs

    • Session 2: Friday, October 1, 12:30-2:30 PM CST –  Informational Webinar

    If you are an undergraduate student who is thinking about applying to graduate school in a STEM field, this two-part series will provide comprehensive information about how to maximize your chance of getting into graduate school and how to thrive once you begin work on your graduate degree.

    September 24, 12:30-2:30 – The panel session will feature PhDs and current graduate students who have been in your shoes, and who will share their tips and lessons learned from the application and interview process, as well as best practices for succeeding once you begin work as a graduate student.

    October 1, 12:30-2:30 – The informational webinar will cover the aspects of a great graduate school portfolio including your personal statement, resume/CV, and letters of recommendation. In addition, we’ll provide insight into what graduate schools look for on an application, tips for acing your interviews, and how to choose the graduate program that is the right fit for you.


  • More cool Physics info!

    Massive Science

    This past Tuesday, September 13th, was Ben Barres’s birthday. He would’ve been 67. We took the occasion to remember his legacy of kindness and mentorship towards his students and other scientists. Documenting the lives of scientists who have made bigger impacts than they’ve been given credit for is Massive’s bread-and-butter. This Weekend’s Reads is a collection of our latest batch of heroes. More to come.

    The neuroscientist Ben Barres appearing on Charlie Rose's show
    Screenshot via YouTube


    Up to five cups of coffee per day seems to be fine. Six or more? Your brain is going to feel it

    Burcin Ikiz
    The scientist Valerie Thomas

    Meet Valerie Thomas, the inventor and scientist who launched the longest-running satellite imaging Earth’s surface


    During Thomas’s three-decade career at NASA, she connected scientists with the data they need to understand our planet

    Hanusia Higgins
    Nancy Grace Roman looking up at a large control panel
    Via Wikimedia


    She discovered fundamental truths about stars and galaxies, and also shaped NASA into what we know it as today

    Briley Lewis
    Astronomy, Astrophysics
    University of California, Los Angeles


    tarot deck

    We teamed up with NAVEL to create a zine that focuses on how genomics can inform identity. Through essays, conversations, and artistic works, this zine explores race, risks and reparations in the post-genomic era, the heritability of our political beliefs, genetic privacy, and more.

    The astronomer Vera Rubin
    Matteo Farinella

    From childhood, she preferred ‘to stay up and watch the stars than go to sleep’

    Brittney G. Borowiec
    Comparative Physiology
    Wilfrid Laurier University
    The biochemist Gerty Cori working in the lab
    Smithsonian Institute via Wikimedia Commons


    Cori’s work determined glycogen storage “disease” had several subtypes, each with a unique molecular cause

  • AI in healthcare

    Carleton is excited to welcome Professor Collin Stultz  as a (virtual) visiting scholar! Dr. Stultz, a leading researcher in medical engineering who holds both an MD and a PhD in Biophysics, will speak at 4pm on Tuesday, September 21, on the use of machine learning in the practice of medicine.  One of his recent interests has been the potential value of artificial intelligence in addressing health inequities.  You can register to watch the lecture on Zoom on your own, or join a group watching the lecture in Olin 141.

  • St. Olaf astro talk

    Tuesday, September 21

    Physics WAPhLS (Women in Astronomy and Physics Lecture Series): Research Talk on the Holographic Principle and its Impact on Spacetime.
    Dr. Elena Caceres, University of Texas, Austin
    5:30 pm, Zoom Link

  • Interested in pre-med?

    AAPM (medical physics’s professional organization) is opening up applications for 2022 summer undergraduate fellowship program.
  • 3-2 Engineering program info

    Tuesday September 21 during common time (noon – 1 pm), Ron Laue of Washington University in St. Louis, will be on campus to host an information session about the dual degree program. Attendance is recommended if you are considering a dual degree or want to learn more about it. It may also be useful if you want to find out more about engineering school more broadly. It will be held in Anderson 036.

  • This Week in Physics Magazine — September 20, 2021


    Turning a Quantum Computer into a Time Crystal

    September 20, 2021

    Google’s Sycamore quantum processor can simulate an elusive quantum system called a discrete time crystal.


    From Coordination to Collapse in Rigged Economies

    Sitabhra Sinha – September 15, 2021

    A game-theoretical model of a rigged economy predicts the emergence of cartels followed by a risk of instability as the economy becomes more complex.

    Research News

    Toward Skin-Like Electronics

    September 16, 2021

    A technique that allows researchers to fabricate 42,000 elastic transistors per square centimeter takes them a step closer to creating electronic devices that look and behave like skin.


    A Way to Experimentally Test String Theory’s “Fuzzball” Prediction

    September 16, 2021

    Simulations reveal the gravitational-wave signal of string theory’s “fuzzy” black holes, a signature that researchers could potentially measure.


    A Scalable Code for Reducing Quantum Errors

    September 15, 2021

    A new scheme could offer a technologically viable solution for remedying computational errors in near-term quantum devices.


    Long-Range Spin Currents with Chiral Crystals

    September 14, 2021

    Chiral crystals can produce spin-polarized currents that propagate over tens of micrometers—a promising feature for application in spintronics devices.


    Superpositions of Chiral Molecules

    September 14, 2021

    Matter-wave diffraction can put chiral molecules into superpositions of left- and right-handed forms, enabling new studies of how the two states interact with their environment.