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February 3, 2017

Richard Taylor Profiled in The Atlantic About why Fractals are Soothing

You can read the full article here:

“Your visual system is in some way hardwired to understand fractals,” said Taylor. “The stress-reduction is triggered by a physiological resonance that occurs when the fractal structure of the eye matches that of the fractal image being viewed.” If a scene is too complicated, like a city intersection, we can’t easily take it all in, and that in turn leads to some discomfort, even if subconsciously. It makes sense that our visual cortex would feel most at home among the most common natural features we evolved alongside. So perhaps part of our comfort in nature derives from fluent visual processing.

November 14, 2016

Schombert et al’s law for disk galaxies in APS Viewpoint

The PRL by Jim Schombert and 2 co-authors is discussed in the recent APS Viewpoint. Read all about it here:

October 11, 2016

Stephanie Majewski, UO professor of physics, is featured on Jefferson Public Radio

Stephanie Majewski likes it when things bump into each other.

Which is a huge OVER-simplification of her work in the field of physics at the University of Oregon.

But it IS true that she learns a lot from atoms crashing into each other, especially at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) in Switzerland.

Dr. Majewski’s work is the topic of this month’s installment of “cUriOus: Research Meets Radio.”

We pick her brain about dark matter, supersymmetry, and more.



October 3, 2016

Research from Corwin’s Lab Featured in an ‘Around the O’ Article

In Corwin’s lab, researchers created a simple large-scaled system in which the waves they generated represented molecules that would be present in a microscale material. What they did provided a scientific proof-of-concept that is detailed a paper published online ahead of print in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

The research shows that the surface of water can be altered to form a two-dimensional metafluid with independent control of effective internal temperature, molecular movement and viscosity so that it takes on the quality of something else.

You can read the full article here:



July 28, 2016

UO Physics Professor Raghuveer Parthasarathy’s Research on Bacterial Competition Featured in ‘Around the O’ Article

With help from 3-D microscopy, collaborating scientists from three labs discovered that bacterial competition in the zebrafish gut is driven by natural mechanical contractions that move contents through the intestine. Their findings are detailed in the July 26 issue of the online journal PLOS Biology.

Numerous diseases are tied to gut microbiota. The probiotics industry targets intestinal health with products built mostly around enzyme cultures and bacteria. The UO discovery could lead to better products, said Raghuveer Parthasarathy, a professor of physics.

You can read the full article here:

June 15, 2016

UO scientists play key role in further detection of gravitational waves at LIGO

Albert Einstein predicted the existence of gravitational waves as a consequence of his famous general theory of relativity, but until LIGO they had never been observed or measured. The detection and analysis of gravitational waves gives scientists a new window on the universe, allowing them to observe events far outside the Milky Way in ways never before possible.

In both recent detections, the UO team’s role was to ensure that the signal was actually from a gravitational wave and not the result of a terrestrial event, such as lightning. The Oregon team has worked hard to understand exactly how such earthly signals can interfere with a gravitational wave signal.

The second discovery “has truly put the ‘O’ for observatory in LIGO,” said Caltech’s Albert Lazzarini, deputy director of the LIGO Laboratory.

You can read the full article here:

June 10, 2016

Richard Taylor is Excellence awardee

Congratulations to RIchard Taylor for being one of the 15 UO recipients of the 2016-17 Fund for Faculty Excellence awards!


May 2, 2016

Eric Corwin’s research on ‘Cracking the Glass Problem’ is featured in a recent ‘Around the O’ article.

Under a new initiative — “Cracking the Glass Problem” — announced by the New York City-based Simons Foundation, Professor of Physics, Eric Corwin will study the material properties of jamming, a process that is directly applicable to what happens to glass.

Corwin uses supercomputing and mathematical models to capture insights about what happens when objects moving freely jam to a standstill. He focuses on their geometric structures as materials transition in and out of a jammed state.

You can read the full article here:



April 8, 2016

A Team of UO Physics Researchers use Light and Sound Waves to Control Electron States

University of Oregon physicists have combined light and sound to control electron states in an atom-like system, providing a new tool in efforts to move toward quantum-computing systems.

Using sound waves known as surface acoustic waves to change electron states could foster data transfer between quantum bits.

“What we have accomplished could lead to a new architecture — a new way — to design a computer chip. Instead of using electrical circuits we incorporate sound waves on a chip, with our eyes on acoustic circuits and also on potential applications in tomorrow’s quantum computers.” Said Professor Hailin Wang.

You can read the full article here:

February 11, 2016

UO group plays key role in Gravitational Wave Detection

A press conference on Feb 11 announced the first observation of gravitational waves made by the LIGO collaboration, which includes a group from UO Physics. Read about it in the around the O article along with the livestream of the press conference and many news articles, including the NY Times.

The announcement was accompanied on Feb 11 by the appearance of the main detection paper in Physical Review Letters, along with 8 companion papers which appeared in the following day.

The UO’s LIGO team includes Raymond Frey, Robert Schofield, James Brau, postdoctoral researcher Dipongkar Talukder and graduate students Sudarshan Karki, Ryan Quitzow-James, Jordan Palamos, Vinny Roma and Paul Schale.

The UO’s James Brau will discuss gravitational waves in a talk titled “Einstein’s Warped Universe — Riding Gravity Waves Through Spacetime” at 6 p.m., March 23, at the Eugene Public Library, 100 W. 10th Ave. The lecture, geared for a general audience, will provide a broad overview of what gravitational waves are and the effort to detect them. The event will be held in the Bascom-Tykeson Room on the library’s first floor.’

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