University of Minnesota
School of Physics & Astronomy
Rafael Fernandes
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Most metals, when cooled below a certain temperature, become superconductors. A superconductor not only carries electric current without dissipation but it also expels the magnetic field from its interior. "Microscopically we understand that the system is in a new quantum state where pairs of electrons form bound states, called Cooper pairs, in a coherent way, " says Rafael Fernandes, a theoretical physicist who studies superconductivity.


First University of Minnesota-built small satellite launches

Jenna Burgett and Kyle Houser with a model of the cubesat satellite SOCRATES

Jenna Burgett a student in the School of Physics and Astronomy is a project leader for a group that will launch the first Minnesota-built 'cubesat' into space. A cubesat is a small research satellite the size of a shoebox. Signal of Opportunity CubeSat for Ranging and Timing Experiments (SOCRATES) will observe gamma ray photons from deep space. Burgett and Kyle Houser, another member of the The Small Satellite Laboratory delivered SOCRATES in person to Houston for launch on November 2. More »

In Memoriam, Professor Cork Johnson


Professor Emeritus Walter "Cork" Johnson passed away in Minneapolis on September 24th at the age of 91. Cork was an expert on precision mass spectroscopy. A native of Minneapolis and a student of Al Nier, he received his BA, MA and PhD in Physics from the University. After a brief stint at General Electric, Cork joined the faculty of the School in 1958 and retired in 1993. More »

Fortson receives Nicholson Medal for Outreach

Lucy Fortson

Professor Lucy Fortson has been awarded the 2019 Nicholson Medal for Outreach by the American Physical Society "for extraordinary work in bringing the excitement and discovery of scientific research to the public through her leadership of the Zooniverse project." More »

In Memoriam, Professor Hans Courant

Hans Courant

Professor Emeritus Hans Courant, the founder of the high energy physics group at the University of Minnesota, died in Minneapolis on August 21, 2019. He was 94 years old. More »

Kakalios video goes viral


Professor James Kakalios of the School of Physics and Astronomy made a video "Physicist Breaks Down The Science Of 10 Iconic Marvel Scenes" that has had 1.6 million views in less than a week. Kakalios has written three popular physics books including the "Physics of Superheroes" making him a much sought-after expert commentator. More »


Friday, November 15th
3:35 pm:
"The Methodologists – Following the Scientists who make Tools, not Facts” —
Nicole Nelson, Medical History and Bioethics, University of Wisconsin - Madison
Refreshments served at 3:15 p.m.
4:40 pm:
Sterile neutrinos oscillating at short baselines —
Andy Furmanski
Monday, November 18th
12:15 pm:
Radiation from black holes, fundamental constants, multi-messengers at the solar mass scale: tidbits from the Astro2020 White Papers —
Larry Rudnick, UMN
Tuesday, November 19th
1:25 pm:
Space Physics Seminar in Tate 201-20
Periodicities in Type III radio bursts observed by Parker Solar Probe and in coronal active regions —
Cynthia Cattell and Lindsay Glesener
3:30 pm:
CESTA Seminar in 110 PAN
A day in the Life of a Data Scientist at Seagate —
Dr. Nicholas Propes and Dr. Zhiqiang Xing
Wednesday, November 20th
1:25 pm:
Extracting Quantitative Band-edge Profiles from Buried Heterojunctions from Hard X-ray Photoelectron Spectra —
Scott A. Chambers, Physical and Computational Sciences Directorate, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory
1:25 pm:
Extracting Quantitative Band-edge Profiles from Buried Heterojunctions from Hard X-ray Photoelectron Spectra —
Scott A. Chambers, Physical and Computational Sciences Directorate Pacific Northwest National Laboratory
Thursday, November 21st
10:10 am:
Biophysics Seminar in 120 PAN
12:10 pm:
Evan Skillman and Liliya Williams
3:35 pm:
Stellar UV Light and the Origins of Life's Building Blocks —
Dimitar Sasselov, Harvard University
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