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April 3, 2019

Jayanth Banavar will assume his appointment as a professor in the UO’s Department of Physics

Dear University of Oregon community:

I am writing to let you know that Jayanth Banavar will complete his service as provost and senior vice president as of July 1. In stepping back from his academic leadership position, Jayanth, a renowned physicist, will assume his appointment as a professor in the UO’s Department of Physics in the College of Arts and Sciences. I am delighted that he will continue to be part of the UO community.

I want to thank Jayanth for his distinguished service as provost over the last two years. He has served in one of the most challenging executive roles at any university with great warmth, caring, and an unwavering focus on strengthening and building academic excellence at the UO. During his tenure, he has implemented major changes within the Office of the Provost to improve academic affairs, made impressive strides that bolster the UO’s academic foundation, and been a champion of diversity and inclusion. Among his numerous accomplishments, Jayanth solidified the use of a more transparent budget model for our schools and colleges and an innovative academic hiring plan that is strategically increasing our faculty ranks. He also advanced our coordinated effort to revolutionize student advising on campus, helped launch an ambitious interdisciplinary data science program, assisted in the revamping of our Clark Honors College, and recruited several deans and outstanding scholars, including Nobel Prize-winner David Wineland.

There is no doubt Jayanth has made an indelible and lasting positive impact on the UO during his tenure as provost. I personally appreciate his sense of humor, his ability to approach an issue both analytically and with empathy, and his constant dedication to doing what is best for the institution. I respect his decision to step down and am very grateful for his service to the UO.

Going forward, we will strive for a smooth transition that maintains all of the momentum and progress that Jayanth has delivered in the Office of the Provost. Over the next few weeks, I will consult with campus stakeholders and faculty leaders about selecting an interim provost and the process for filling the role permanently. The provost is the chief academic officer of the institution, and ensuring that we have effective leadership in the position is vital to achieving our shared academic goals and objectives.

Please join me again in thanking Jayanth for all he has done to serve the University of Oregon.

Michael H. Schill
President and Professor of Law

January 30, 2019

Research from McMorran lab featured in Around-the-O

The UO Physics McMorran lab has created a technique, STEM holography, that sends electrons along two separate paths, one going through a sample and one not. This allows them to measure the delay between them to create a high-resolution image. It provides improved atomic resolution of a sample’s outer structure and unveils previously unseen interfaces between a sample and underlying material.

UO researchers have now shown — using microscopes at the UO, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and Hitachi Ltd. Research and Development Group in Japan — that STEM holography works.

“Using flexible STEM holography, an offshoot we developed in collaboration with Toshiaki Tanigaki at Hitachi, we now can capture with more precision the interesting geometries of materials,” Yasin said, “Previously, the field of view of STEM holography was limited to maybe 30 nanometers. Using flexible STEM holography expands the field of view.”

You can read the full article here.

January 3, 2019

UO ranked No. 1 in the U.S. for master’s degrees in physics

The University of Oregon granted more master’s degrees in physics than any other university in the country in 2017, earning a top ranking in a report recently released by the American Institute of Physics.

The majority of the 24 master’s degrees were awarded to students in the Master’s Industrial Internship Program, a long-successful venture boasting more than 600 alumni spanning two decades.

The program, which emerged from a collaboration among the physics and chemistry departments and the Materials Science Institute, was integrated last year into the Phil and Penny Knight Campus for Accelerating Scientific Impact.

You can read the full Around-the-O article here.

December 5, 2018

Detecting black hole collisions is now routine

UO scientists featured in Around-the-O

The first detection of a gravitational wave in September 2015 rocked the physics world and drew international attention. Now, three years later, improved technology that detects deep-space stellar collisions may be finding them on a daily basis, say University of Oregon researchers.

You can read the full article here.


October 12, 2018

UO Physics and Chemistry Faculty Help Pave the way in Quantum Science Efforts

UO Physics faculty aim to help the United States take a leading role in the fast-evolving quantum technology revolution.

UO physicist Michael Raymer, a Philip H. Knight professor in the Department of Physics, and two colleagues, chemistry professor Andy Marcus and physics professor Brian Smith, have been awarded a $997,000 grant from the National Science Foundation. The award is part of a $31 million NSF program for fundamental quantum research that, together with $281 million in Department of Energy investment, aims to help the United States take a leading role in the fast-evolving quantum technology revolution.

“It’s gratifying to see such excitement and widespread bipartisan support for quantum science research and development,” Conover said. “We were invited to this White House meeting because the UO’s expertise in quantum information science is now widely recognized. Such national visibility is largely due to the scientific leadership and lobbying efforts of the UO’s Michael Raymer.”

You can read the full article here, in Around-the-O.

June 20, 2018

How would you place a 13 ton stone hat on top of 30-foot-tall moai statue?

UO Physics professor Ben McMorran helps in collaboration with former UO student Sean Hixon’s honors thesis on Easter Island moai.

“We were talking about inclined planes and rolling motion, and Sean mentioned his honors thesis work on the question of how the inhabitants of Rapa Nui managed to place large, cylindrical stone hats on top of 30-foot-tall moai statues,” said McMorran. “What was a rather rote mechanics problem for introductory physics became a nice collaboration in which we may have solved the mystery.”

Polynesians likely set up ramps using a parbuckling technique. That’s a simple way to roll objects and has been used to right capsized ships.

The center of a long rope is fixed to the top of a ramp, and two trailing ends are wrapped around a cylinder to be moved. Rope ends are then brought to the top where workers pull on the ropes to move the cylinder safely up the ramp. At the top, the hat would have been tipped and rotated into place.

You can read the full Around-the-O article here.

May 31, 2018

Commencement 2018

You are invited to help honor and celebrate our 2018 Physics graduates.

Monday, June, 18th 2018

12:30 p.m. in the Willamette Hall, Paul Olum atrium

May 15, 2018

UO Hosts CALOR 2018 May 21-25

The UO Center for High Energy Physics will host the 18th International Conference on Calorimetry in Particle Physics (CALOR 2018) May 21-25. Jim Brau is the chair of the local organizing committee. About 100 participants will be attending conference sessions at the EMU. Read about it here:

April 12, 2018

HEP Theory gets new grant

Congratulations to the high-energy theory group, which was recently awarded a new 1.1M$ 3-year grant from the Dept of Energy supporting the work of faculty Chang, Cohen, and Kribs.

February 21, 2018

Richard Taylor Delivers Presentation at Inaugural ‘Wings: UO Presidential Speaker Series’

On January 16th, 2018 UO Physics professor Richard Taylor delivered a presentation on his research and design of Bio-Inspired Retinal Implants at the inaugural ‘Wings: UO Presidential Speaker Series’ at the White Stag Block in Portland, Oregon.

“Vision gives us more than knowledge, it also allows us to appreciate beauty, and nature’s beauty and its impact on us is profound.”

39 million people around the world are totally blind.
246 million people suffer vision loss to the extent that it severely impacts their daily activity.

Through evolution, nature has given us a visual system that is very hard to replicate, but we are in an era where progress towards recovery is on the way.

You can watch Richard’s talk here:

The full ‘Around the O’ article can be found here:


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