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Astronomy News

Fall 2012 Excellent Astronomy Teachers

Author: Bryan Dunne

Published Date:March 27, 2013

The Astronomy Department would like to offer its congratulations to members of the department named to the "List of Teachers Ranked as Excellent" by the Center for Teaching Excellence for the Fall 2012 semester. Included on the list were Prof. Robert Brunner, Prof. Brian Fields, Prof. Charles Gammie, Prof. Athol Kemball, and Dr. Brett Hayes.

Published Date: March 27, 2013


Author: News Bureau | Public Affairs

Published Date:February 14, 2013

On Friday, Feb. 15, an asteroid named 2012 DA14 will pass very closely to Earth. The trajectory of the 150-foot-diameter rock is the nearest fly-by ever predicted for an asteroid this large even closer than some satellites. In an interview with News Bureau physical sciences editor Liz Ahlberg, astronomy professor Leslie Looney discusses the asteroid and its looming approach.

Published Date: February 14, 2013

First Magnitude: A Book of the Bright Sky

Published Date:December 20, 2012

In his latest popular science book, First Magnitude, Professor Emeritus of Astronomy James Kaler takes delight in sharing with us his extensive knowledge and infectious enthusiasm for the study of the skies. First Magnitude is an entry-level book for readers with brightly lit skies. Its purpose is to show them that all is not lost, that they can still enjoy personal astronomy and have an appreciation of the heavens no matter where they live. Available from World Scientific and leading booksellers.

Published Date: December 20, 2012

Binary Black-Hole Mergers in Magnetized Disks

Published Date:December 1, 2012

A snapshot from a simulation of accretion disk surrounding an black-hole binary system was featured on the cover of the November 30, 2012 issue of Physical Review Letters. The simulation is the work of a team of researchers at the University of Illinois: Brian D. Farris, Roman Gold, Vasileios Paschalidis, Zachariah B. Etienne, and Stuart L. Shapiro. A paper on the results of the simulation can be found in Physical Review Letters, Volume 109, Issue 22.

Published Date: December 1, 2012

Benjamin McCall elected APS Fellow

Author: Siv Schwink

Published Date:November 15, 2012

Associate Professor Benjamin McCall has been elected a Fellow of the American Physical Society 'for integrative studies of the simplest polyatomic molecule (H_3+), including its dissociative recombination, proton-swapping reaction with H_2, and astronomical observations and modeling; and for the development of high-sensitivity, high-precision methods for molecular ion spectroscopy.' McCall has built an exciting research program in the emerging field of astrochemistry. His teams work probes the network of chemical reactions responsible for the formation of most molecules in the universe and so has profound implications for our understanding of the origins of the universe and life.

Published Date: November 15, 2012