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Astronomy News

Kemball Appointed to Blue Waters Professorship

Published Date:February 4, 2014

Athol Kemball, Associate Professor in the Department of Astronomy, has been named one of twelve appointees to the Blue Waters professorship.This prestigious honor will give Prof. Kemball access to the Blue Waters Supercomputer at the National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA).

Published Date: February 4, 2014

Three Graduate Alumni Receive National Recognition

Published Date:January 21, 2014

Three Astronomy graduate alumni have recently received prestigious national awards. Karen Yang (PhD 2011) is one of twelve recipients of the Einstein Postdoctoral Fellowship. She is currently a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Michigan. Jim Stone (PhD 1990) has been named a Fellow of the American Physical Society for “his leading role in the development of tools for computational magnetohydrodynamics and in advancing our understanding of the physics of accretion disks, the dynamics of disk driven winds, and the dynamics of molecular clouds.” Scott Kenyon (PhD 1983) has also been named a Fellow of the American Physical Society for “his world-leading stature in observational and theoretical astrophysics including studies of the Symbiotic Variables, Star Formation, Recurrent and Classical Novae, Solar System Formation, and the Structure of the Galaxy.” Congratulations to all three!

Published Date: January 21, 2014

Quasars illuminate swiftly swirling clouds around galaxies

Published Date:January 20, 2014

A new study of light from quasars has provided astronomers with illuminating insights into the swirling clouds of gas that form stars and galaxies, proving that the clouds can shift and change much more quickly than previously thought. Led by University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign astronomy professor Robert J. Brunner and former graduate student Troy Hacker (now with the U.S. Air Force), the astronomers published their findings in the Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society.

Published Date: January 20, 2014

New studies give strong boost to binary-star formation theory

Published Date:January 2, 2014

Using the new capabilities of the upgraded Karl G. Jansky Very Large Array (VLA), scientists have discovered previously-unseen binary companions to a pair of very young protostars. The discovery gives strong support for one of the competing explanations for how double-star systems form. The work was done by a team that includes former Illinois undergraduate John Tobin and Illinois faculty member Leslie Looney.

Published Date: January 2, 2014

New Faculty Member Involved in Discovery of the Year

Published Date:December 16, 2013

Joaquin Vieira, one of the new faculty members in the Department of Astronomy, was involved in one of Physics World's Breakthroughs of the Year. He was one of a team of astronomers working on the South Pole Telescope who were the first to measure B-mode polarization in the cosmic microwave background (CMB) radiation.

Published Date: December 16, 2013