Yue Zhao, assistant professor in Physics and Astronomy, has received a Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation Fundamental Physics Innovation Award, in association with the American Physical Society. This award supports extended visits between researchers to learn, develop, and share techniques or scientific approaches.
Bert VanderHeiden’s (BS Physics ’82, MS Physics ’84 and Ph.D. Physics ‘88) first passions were swimming and water polo. In fact, he won the state championship in swimming in 1975, representing Kearns High School. He was also gifted academically—he excelled in math and was interested in the one physics course that was offered at his high school. The class planted the seed for his decision to major in physics.
Jim Hanson’s (BS Physics ’85) path to the University of Utah and college was different from most students. When he graduated from high school, Hanson had little interest in attending college and no clear goal as to what he wanted to do with his life. He worked odd jobs until he got tired of living out of his car.
As society moves towards a renewable energy future, it’s crucial that solar panels convert light into electricity as efficiently as possible. Some state-of-the-art solar cells are close to the theoretical maximum of efficiency—and physicists from the University of Utah and Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin have figured out a way to make them even better.
It was the beginning of a grand experiment unlike anything the world had ever seen. Ten years ago today, the IceCube Neutrino Observatory fully opened its eyes for the first time. Dozens of intrepid technicians, engineers, and scientists had traveled to the South Pole to build the biggest, strangest telescope in the world. The purpose of the unconventional telescope was to detect signals from passing astrophysical neutrinos: mysterious, tiny, extremely lightweight particles created by some of the most energetic and distant phenomena in the cosmos. IceCube’s founders believed that studying these astrophysical neutrinos would reveal hidden parts of the universe. Over the course of the next decade, they would be proven right.