University of Minnesota
School of Physics & Astronomy
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Assistant Professor Patrick Kelly led a team of researchers that set a distance record and discovered the farthest individual star ever seen. The star, nicknamed Icarus, is 9 billion light-years away--halfway across the visible universe--and would ordinarily not be visible even to the most powerful telescopes. Gravitational lensing allowed the Hubble Space Telescope to pick out Icarus, whose official name is MACS 1149+2223 Lensed Star 1. The unique opportunity to study Icarus also allowed researchers to rule out one of the theories about the mystery of dark matter.


Shifman elected to National Academy of Sciences

Mikhail Shifman

Professor Mikhail Shifman was elected to the National Academy of Sciences (NAS). Membership in the NAS is one of the highest honors given to a scientist or engineer. Shifman is one of only 84 researchers nationwide to be elected to the National Academy of Sciences this year. He will be inducted into the Academy next spring during the National Academy of Sciences 156th Annual Meeting. More »

Physics and Astronomy major wins Astronaut Scholarship

Aliza Beverage

Aliza Beverage, a junior studying the origin of stars with Professor Robert Gehrz, has been named a 2018 Astronaut Scholar. The scholarship provides $10,000 for a year of study for sophomores and juniors pursuing a research-oriented career. More »

Greven named NSSA Fellow

Martin Greven

Professor Martin Greven has been named a 2018 fellow of the Neutron Scattering Society of America (NSSA). The Fellowship recognizes members who have made significant contributions to the neutron scattering community in North America. Greven was cited for "world-class efforts in the growth and neutron scattering study of bulk oxides, especially for his influential work on cuprate high-Tc superconductors." More »

Bergstedt receives NSF Fellowship

Kendra Bergstedt

Kendra Bergstedt a graduating senior in the School of Physics and Astronomy has received a fellowship from the National Science Foundation (NSF). The program recognizes outstanding graduate students in NSF-supported science. Bergstedt was one of 12,000 applicants competing for 2,000 awards. She will receive a stipend of $34,000 for three of the next five years and will use the fellowship to pursue a Ph.D. in Plasma Physics at Princeton University. More »

Crowell receives Taylor Teaching Award

Paul Crowell

Professor Paul Crowell of the School of Physics and Astronomy received the 2018 George W. Taylor Distinguished Teaching Award from the College of Science and Engineering. Crowell will receive $3,000 to be used for professional development in teaching and research. More »


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