University of Texas at Austin

Archive for the ‘physics’ Category


Thursday, October 18, 2012

New physics professor finds Higgs Boson, then Austin

Peter Onyisi is a new assistant professor in the Department of Physics. He was part of the team working with the Large Hadron Collider that confirmed the existence of the Higgs boson particle.

Peter Onyisi is a new assistant professor in the Department of Physics. He was part of the team working with the Large Hadron Collider that confirmed the existence of the Higgs boson particle.

Physicist Peter Onyisi arrives as a new assistant professor in the College of Natural Sciences with an extraordinary feather already in his cap. He was part of the team at CERN working with the Large Hadron Collider that confirmed the existence of the Higgs boson particle.

Daniel Oppenheimer in
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Friday, June 3, 2011

“Science Secrets” author zaps popular science myths; i.e., Einstein not wound up by synchronizing Swiss clocks

Associate Professor of History Alberto Martinez.  Photo by Judy Hogan.

Associate Professor of History Alberto Martinez. Photo by Judy Hogan.

Jessica Sinn in the College of Liberal Arts conducted a question-and-answer session with Alberto Martinez, associate professor in the Department of History, about his new book, “Science Secrets: The Truth about Darwin’s Finches, Einstein’s Wife, and Other Myths.”

Legend has it Benjamin Franklin ventured out on a stormy day to fly a kite with a lightning rod and a key dangling on the end of the string. When the lightning struck the
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Tuesday, January 11, 2011

DIY: Building your own spin zone

Physics Professor Alex de Lozanne and his lab are building a $438,000 scanning tunneling microscope from the ground up.

Physics Professor Alex de Lozanne and his lab are building a $438,000 scanning tunneling microscope from the ground up.

When Professor Alex de Lozanne was a boy he made things with Tinker Toys, went on to a mechanical version of Tinker Toys and just kept on tinkering.

Even as a physicist at The University of Texas at Austin, he’s built instruments used in his laboratory.

For his latest project, de Lozanne and members of his lab are building a spin-polarized scanning tunneling microscope (STM)
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Friday, September 24, 2010

“2012″ –– The movie, the physics

Sacha Kopp, associate professor in the Department of Physics, at the Sept. 14, 2010 Science Study Break. Photo by the UT Libraries.

Sacha Kopp, associate professor in the Department of Physics, at the Sept. 14, 2010 Science Study Break. Photo by the UT Libraries.

Here’s physicist Sacha Kopp’s synopsis of “2012,” a 2009 movie that purports to depict what happens when the Mayan calendar turns a big page:

“In this story, the Earth is basically destroyed. There’s a giant solar eruption and this eruption releases this incredible burst of particles called neutrinos, and these neutrinos come whizzing through the universe and bury themselves like,
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Thursday, September 16, 2010

Texas physicist gets a line on origin of magnetic fields

Mahajanmug2Magnetic fields are everywhere. They permeate the cosmos. They surround the Earth. A great deal about how magnetism works, including how an existing magnetic field can be amplified, is well understood. But the search for the seed that needs to be amplified has posed a serious challenge in theoretical physics.

Now Dr. Swadesh Mahajan of the Institute for Fusion Studies, and his colleague, Dr. Zensho Yoshida of the University of Tokyo might have identified a mechanism that can explain the origin
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Thursday, August 12, 2010

Sudarshan wins Dirac Medal

George Sudarshan

George Sudarshan

University of Texas at Austin physicist E.C. George Sudarshan will share the 2010 Dirac Medal and Prize with Italian physicist Nicola Cabibbo for their work on the fundamental forces of nature.

The prize is given by the Abdus Salam International Centre for Theoretical Physics in Trieste, Italy.

The award recognizes the physicists’ fundamental contributions to the understanding of weak interactions and other aspects of theoretical physics. The weak interaction is one of the four fundamental forces of nature, along with strong interaction,
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Thursday, July 22, 2010

Time Scales: That was fast, really fast

Aaron Bernstein

Aaron Bernstein

Further Findings talked to several researchers at The University of Texas at Austin about the time scales in which they work, ranging from millions and billions of years to fractions of a second.

Aaron Bernstein is a laser physicist and associate director of the High Intensity Laser Group. The group operates the Texas Petawatt Laser.

In explaining the time scales involved in his research, Bernstein sounds like a question on the Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT).

Bernstein works with lasers that blast pulses
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Friday, May 21, 2010

Heckuva job, Brownian

Toncang Li, lead author of Brownian motion paper

Toncang Li, lead author of Brownian motion paper

It’s not everyday one can headline a discovery, “Physicists Prove Einstein Wrong with Observation Of Instantaneous Velocity in Brownian Particles.”

But that’s what Dr. Mark Raizen, a professor in the Department of Physics at The University of Texas at Austin, did in an experiment.

The title of the paper, published online in Science Express, had more Joe Friday just-the-facts tone, “Measurement of the Instantaneous Velocity of a Brownian Particle.”

You can hear Raizen talk about the
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Monday, May 3, 2010

Physics and psychology: Acts of creation

Steven Weinberg at Google

Steven Weinberg at Google

From coast to coast, University of Texas at Austin researchers are talking about their research–and their recently published books. Two recent talks are available on the Internet.

Steven Weinberg, the physicist, spoke at Google headquarters in California recently. His talk about his book, “Lake Views: The World and the Universe,” is posted on authors@google on YouTube.

David Buss, an evolutionary psychologist, spoke at the American Natural History Museum. His topic, Why Humans Have Sex. The talk is posted as a
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Monday, April 26, 2010

Atom Stopper

With help from other fields, Mark Raizen and his lab slow and control atoms

Mark Raizen

Mark Raizen

Professor Mark Raizen not only advises his students to pay attention to what’s going on in other fields, he shows them how it’s done.

“It’s something I emphasize to my students–that the directions you take in research are often guided by other fields, completely unexpected fields,” he says. “It’s important to keep an open mind and learn about what other people are doing outside your field because
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