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.
Mel Ulmer and Hooman Mohseni awarded Keck Foundation Grant
July 10, 2015 - Prof. Mel Ulmer and Prof. Hooman Mohseni, along with external collaborator Olivier Guyon of the Subaru Telescope, have been awarded a $1 million grant from the W. M. Keck Foundation. The team will develop a fast, ultra-sensitive camera that could be the first to directly image light reflected by planets outside our solar system and help scientists in their search for life on Earth-like exoplanets.
Read more at the Northwestern Newscenter.
Prof. Kalogera awarded NSF Research Traineeship Award
April 8, 2015 - Prof. Kalogera has been awarded one of eight NRT Awards. Along with Prof. Michael Schmitt and key participants from EPS, SESP, EECS, and IEMS, she will lead interdisciplinary training on data-driven discovery. Over the 5-year duration, the $3 million award will provide NRT graduate fellowships to over 35 students drawn from multiple existing Ph.D. programs. Read the Northwestern News story here.
Fred Rasio and Carl Rodriguez Predict Detection of More Merging Black Holes than Previously Thought
July 29, 2015 - Colliding black holes release energy as gravitational waves, a phenomenon that will soon be observable when the the first gravitational wave detectors come online. In a study published in Physical Review Letters this week, Prof. Fred Rasio and graduate student Carl Rodriguez predict that the number of merging black holes will be greater than previously thought.
Read more at the Northwestern Newscenter
Xiaowen Chen Wins ISP Thesis Award
June 4, 2015 - Xiaowen Chen has received the Prize for Distinguished Honors Thesis from Northwestern’s Integrated Science Program (ISP) for her senior thesis entitled “Fractal Geometry of Undriven Dissipative Systems”. Xiaowen is an undergraduate majoring in Physics, Mathematics, and ISP, and has performed her research on transient chaos in Prof. Adilson Motter’s group. She is graduating this spring and will join Princeton University in the fall to pursue her graduate studies in physics.