Dearborn Telescope Observatory

Welcome to the Department of Physics and Astronomy at Northwestern University

Physics explains the natural world in the most universal manner possible. Physicists look for the hidden symmetries that underlie and govern the multitude of phenomena in the world around us. Our department has active research programs in areas ranging from theoretical astrophysics and observational astronomy to complex systems, condensed matter physics, atomic, molecular and optical physics, and high-energy physics.

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Trapped Molecular Rotors Laser Cooled to the Ground Quantum State

September 2, 2014 - Trapped molecules are widely recognized as holding promise for applications ranging from quantum information processing to searches for new physics beyond the Standard Model. However, the requisite internal state control and non-destructive state readout have proven challenging.  Now, Brian Odom’s group has developed a technique to use a single broadband laser to pump trapped molecules to their ground rotational-vibrational state, achieving cooling from room temperature to 4 Kelvins in a fraction of a second.  The results were in published in Nature Communications 5, 4783 (2014).

Profs. Rivers and Meyer make ASG Honor Roll

September 30, 2014 - Physics and Astronomy Professors Andy Rivers and Dave Meyer have been named to the Associated Student Government's 2013-2014 Faculty Honor Roll.

See the full honor roll here.


Panagiotis Spentzouris Named Head of Scientific Computing at Fermilab

September 19, 2014 - NU PhD. Panagiotis Spentzouris has been named head of the  Scientific Computing Division at Fermilab. Panagiotis got his doctorate working with Heidi Schellman in 1994 and, after a postdoc at Columbia University, became a Research Associate at Fermilab.  At Fermilab he has led a group of scientists and programers who  have developed  computer modeling tools that  enable large-scale virtual prototyping of particle accelerators for physics and many other applications.

Read more here.


Andy Li Wins WorldQuant Scholarship

September 9, 2014 - Andy Li has been awarded a World Quantitative and Science Scholarship from the WorldQuant Foundation. Andy is a graduate student currently working with Prof. Jens Koch on quantum simulation of interacting many-body systems out of equilibrium.

Read more on the WorldQuant scholarships here.




September 30, 2014