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Physics & Astronomy

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Center for Bright Beams

June 07, 2021 09:02 PM
How do we collect information about the world around us? How do we organize it in a way that makes sense so we can improve society? Can we make improvements in science that will help other scientists in their work?
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NASA turns to BYU for critical Mars research ahead of human missions

June 19, 2019 09:01 AM
A multidisciplinary team of BYU chemistry and engineering researchers has been tasked by NASA to develop a system to measure the size and electrical charge of Mars dust — a detail seemingly innocuous, yet critical to the success of human missions to the Red Planet.
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Dr. Kent Gee Appointed as Chair of the Department of Physics & Astronomy

May 31, 2019 10:13 AM
Dean Gus Hart of the College of Physical and Mathematical Sciences has appointed Dr. Kent L. Gee as chair of the Department of Physics & Astronomy. Gee replaced Richard R. Vanfleet, who served as department chair since 2013.
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Finding Your Place in the Universe

May 10, 2019 10:17 AM
Astronomy professor Denise Stephens encouraged students to embrace their talents and use them for good at a recent BYU Women’s Service and Resources leadership event.
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Go Ahead, Take the Hard Classes

November 19, 2018 12:06 PM
Dr. Pete Roming may now be the director of Southwest Research Institute’s Space Engineering Department, but he still remembers how BYU helped start his career.
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Exciting Stars, Exciting Times, Exciting Research

November 03, 2017 11:19 AM
David neilsen and eric hirschmann have spent years studying binary partnerships that are millions, even billions, of light years away in the universe—and those binary partnerships echo their personal partnership, both as friends and as research colleagues.
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Sounds to Astound

October 09, 2017 12:01 PM
Sound can be sensational.
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BYU-Created Mini Tool has Massive Potential

August 31, 2017 01:06 PM
BYU researchers have created a miniaturized, portable version of a tool now capable of analyzing Mars’ atmosphere — and that’s just one of its myriad possible uses. For decades mass spectrometers have offered a relatively fast and highly sensitive way to analyze and detect chemical compounds. But their bulky size has been a hindrance, limiting their in-field potential.
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BYU Researchers Develop Method That Could Produce Stronger, More Pliable Metals

August 08, 2017 09:46 AM
It may not be as catchy as chains and weak links, but physicists and engineers know “a material is only as strong as its weakest grain boundary.”
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Astrofest Brings Children to the Stars

June 16, 2017 10:11 AM
Astronomical processes and changes occur slowly on a timescale of years, decades, and millennia. That was not the case at BYU’s fast-moving Astrofest, the annual Department of Physics and Astronomy event that brings elementary school children to the stars for an afternoon.
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Wanted: Female Physicists

June 12, 2017 10:15 AM
Summer had just begun, but teenage girls from across Utah County spent May 30 and 31 on the fourth floor of the Eyring Science Center soldering wires together.
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Uncovering Pieces of the Universe Puzzle

June 08, 2017 10:21 AM
Thirty years ago, J. Ward Moody was pondering the existence of dwarf galaxies far, far away.
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Hottest Known Planet Published in Nature

June 07, 2017 10:27 AM
It’s hot. Seriously hot. Not creeping-into-the-90s-crank-up-the-AC hot: nearly-8,000-degrees-Fahrenheit hot.
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A Master, A Teacher, A Leader

May 19, 2017 11:11 AM
Teaching has always had a huge impact on BYU physics professor Duane Merrell—an impact that has both affected his life and guided his career and passion for teaching physics.
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Astrofest: Where Fun and Science Collide

May 03, 2017 03:05 PM
BYU invites families and students to attend this year’s Astrofest.
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Legos Don’t Stand a Chance Against Time Reversal

April 03, 2017 02:25 PM
A crowd of 29 stands still, positioned as lookouts in various directions. A chirp punctuates the silence before being replaced by a distinct buzz. The buzzing grows louder, then abruptly drops back into silence. Twenty-eight Lego figurines shift slightly — they survive. But one unlucky companion lies on his back, toppled by an invisible force.
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BYU Researchers Help Discover Massive Exoplanet

March 29, 2017 12:30 PM
Clement Gaillard spent three or four nights a week operating BYU’s Orson Pratt Observatory telescope in the summer of 2015. On the night of June 23, the physics undergrad pointed the telescope toward a star more than a thousand light years away, recording meticulous data and hoping. Soon after, physics professor Denise Stephens and a visiting student reduced the data and looked anxiously at the plot points they had gathered. On a six-hour timeline, the dots congregated along a straight line for two hours, dipped down for two, then popped back up through the end.
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Measuring a Quintillion Photons at the Speed of Light

March 20, 2017 12:45 PM
An individual could travel around the world more than seven times in a single second if moving at the speed of light. That’s pretty fast.
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