Physics & Astronomy News

Friday, November 9, 2012 UCLA astronomer Ben Zuckerman and co-author Inseok Song have discovered why comet collisions every six seconds explain a 17-year-old stellar mystery. Read More
Tuesday, November 6, 2012 The UCLA outreach group Astronomy Live! will host "Exploring Your Universe 2012" on Saturday, November 10, 2012 from 12 to 8pm at UCLA. Read More
Wednesday, October 24, 2012 UCLA professor of physics and astronomy Jianwei (John) Miao and European colleagues have developed a process called equally sloped tomography, or EST, to allow breast tumors to be detected earlier and with much greater accuracy. These images are two to three times sharper than those made using current CT scanners at hospitals. The technique also uses a lower dose of X-ray radiation than a mammogram. Read More
Thursday, October 4, 2012 UCLA astronomers report the discovery of a remarkable star that orbits the enormous black hole at the center of our Milky Way galaxy in the shortest known orbit of any star near this black hole, said research co-author Andrea Ghez, leader of the discovery team and a UCLA professor of physics and astronomy. Read More
Wednesday, October 3, 2012 Roberto Peccei, along with Prof. Emeritus Helen Quinn of SLAC, will share the 2013 J.J. Sakurai Prize for Theoretical Particle Physics, awarded by the American Physical Society to recognize and encourage outstanding achievement in particle theory. Professor Peccei is the first UCLA recipient of the Sakurai prize, named in honor of our late colleague here in the department. Read More
Monday, October 1, 2012 Rene Ong and Vladimir Vasiliev have won a major NSF grant entitled "Development of a Novel Telescope for Very High-Energy Gamma-Ray Astrophysics." Although there are many collaborators on this project, UCLA is the lead and the telescope design comes from Vladimir's early pioneering efforts with this kind of optical design.
Wednesday, July 18, 2012 For the first time a distant spiral galaxy is being observed as it existed roughly three billion years after the Big Bang. "As you go back in time to the early universe, galaxies look really strange, clumpy and irregular, not symmetric," said Alice Shapley, a UCLA associate professor of physics and astronomy, and co-author of the study. "The vast majority of old galaxies look like train wrecks. Our first thought was, why is this one so different, and so beautiful?" Read More
Thursday, July 5, 2012 Astronomers report a baffling discovery never seen before: An extraordinary amount of dust around a nearby star has mysteriously disappeared. "It's as if the rings around Saturn had disappeared," said co-author Benjamin Zuckerman, a UCLA professor of physics and astronomy. "This is even more shocking because the dusty disc of rocky debris was bigger and much more massive than Saturn's rings. The disc around this star, if it were in our solar system, would have extended from the sun halfway out to Earth, near the orbit of Mercury." Read More
Thursday, June 21, 2012 Edward L. (Ned) Wright, a professor of physics and astronomy and principal investigator of NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) mission, today was named a recipient of the 2012 Gruber Cosmology Prize, along with other scientists who made major contributions to the Wilkinson Microwave Anisotropy Probe (WMAP). Wright and his colleagues will be honored in Beijing on Aug. 21 for their observations and analyses that have provided rigorous measurements of the age, content, geometry and origin of the universe. Read More
Friday, June 1, 2012 David Jewitt of ESS and Physics & Astronomy was awarded two prizes during the same week: The 2012 Shaw Prize in Astronomy, which he shares with Professor Jane Luu of MIT, and the Kavli Prize in Astrophysics, also shared with Dr. Luu, as well as Michael Brown of Caltech. Professor Jewitt is recognized for his role in the 1993 discovery of the more than 1 billion objects in the Kuiper Belt beyond Neptune.