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  • richardmitnick 5:06 pm on February 4, 2023 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "The Origin of the Origin of the Universe", , , Astronomy, , , , , , , ,   

    From Astrobites : “The Origin of the Origin of the Universe” 

    Astrobites bloc

    From Astrobites

    2.4.23
    Katherine Lee

    Title: Measurement of the Cosmic Microwave Background Spectrum by the COBE FIRAS Instrument

    Authors: J. C. Mather, E. S. Cheng, D. A. Cottingham, R. E. Eplee Jr., D. J. Fixsen, T. Hewagama, R. B. Isaacman, K. A. Jensen, S. S. Meyer, P. D. Noerdlinger, S. M. Read, L. P. Rosen, R. A. Shafer, E. L. Wright, C. L. Bennett, N. W. Boggess, M. G. Hauser, T. Kelsall, S. H. Moseley Jr., R. F. Silverberg, G. F. Smoot, R. Weiss, and D. T. Wilkinson

    First Author’s Institution: NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Maryland, USA

    Status: published in ApJ [open access]

    Back in the mid-20th century, there were two competing theories about the origin of the Universe. Scientists, including Edwin Hubble and Georges Lemaître, had already established that space was expanding.

    ______________________________________________________________________________
    Edwin Hubble

    .


    ______________________________________________________________________________

    Some argued that if you run this expansion back in time, it implies a beginning when everything must have been compressed into a hot, dense singularity, exploding outward from that point in a “Big Bang”. Other astronomers, however, were uncomfortable with the idea that the Universe even had an origin at all. These scientists, most notably Fred Hoyle, argued instead for a cosmology in which the Universe had always existed and had always been expanding, with new galaxies springing up periodically to fill in the gaps. This picture of our Universe is referred to as the “Steady State Theory”.

    These two theories predict fundamentally different things about the background temperature of the Universe. If matter in the Universe does not originate from a single point, as in the Steady State picture, then we would expect the background radiation to be chaotic in nature; there would be no reason for different unconnected regions of spacetime to look the same as each other.

    However, if everything in the Universe comes from the same initial conditions, then everything should be roughly the same temperature. This can also be expressed as the idea that the Universe should be in thermodynamic equilibrium on large scales, and that if you measure the intensity of background radiation at all frequencies, you should see a blackbody spectrum—the characteristic spectrum of an object in equilibrium, dependent only on the object’s temperature. Thus, a key prediction of the Big Bang theory is that the temperature should be nearly constant over the entire sky, with the differences (called anisotropies) from this constant average temperature being extremely small—around one part in 100,000!

    COBE comes to the rescue

    Big Bang cosmologists in the 1960s believed that the peak of the Universe’s blackbody spectrum should be in the microwave frequency range, defined as between 300 MHz and 300 GHz. This would be expected from a massive explosion of energy at the Big Bang, the light from which would have been redshifted into the microwave range as it traveled through the expanding universe. So, if the Big Bang theory is true, we should expect to see a constant source of background radiation coming from all directions in the microwave sky: a so-called Cosmic Microwave Background, or CMB.

    The detection of this CMB radiation in 1965 by Arno Penzias and Robert Woodrow Wilson, as well as the cosmological interpretation of that detection by Robert Dicke, Jim Peebles, Peter Roll, and David Wilkinson, laid the groundwork for modern cosmology, and was the beginning of the end for the idea that the Universe had no origin.

    However, Penzias and Wilson’s discovery was not an accurate measurement of the CMB’s temperature or spectrum. No anisotropies had been detected, and there was still debate over whether or not the CMB spectrum was truly a blackbody. The goal of the Cosmic Background Explorer (COBE) satellite, launched by NASA in 1989, was to answer these lingering questions.

    COBE was split into three instruments: the Differential Microwave Radiometer (DMR), the Far-InfraRed Absolute Spectrophotometer (FIRAS), and the Diffuse Infrared Background Experiment (DIRBE). DMR measured the CMB anisotropies, while DIRBE mapped infrared radiation from foreground dust.

    2
    igure 1: A diagram of the FIRAS instrument, taken from Figure 1a of Mather et. al. (1999).

    FIRAS, meanwhile, was designed to measure the CMB spectrum. It scanned the entire sky multiple times in order to minimize errors, and measured the temperature over a wide range of frequencies between 30 and FIRAS, meanwhile, was designed to measure the CMB spectrum. It scanned the entire sky multiple times in order to minimize errors and measured the temperature over a wide range of frequencies between 30 and nearly 3000 GHz. After eliminating known sources of interference such as cosmic rays, as well as subtracting the effects of light from the Milky Way galaxy and of the Doppler shift caused by the movement of the Earth through space, these scans were then averaged together to create direct measurements of the CMB intensity at various frequencies.

    2
    Figure 2: The cosmic microwave background spectrum, as measured by FIRAS. It shows a near-perfect blackbody, with any deviations from total thermodynamic equilibrium being much too small to see. This plot is taken from Figure 4 of Fixsen et al. (1996), which notes that “uncertainties are a small fraction of the line thickness.”line thickness.”

    The authors found that the background radiation in our universe is in fact extremely close to being a perfect bThe authors of today’s paper found that the background radiation in our Universe is in fact extremely close to being a perfect blackbody! The final temperature found by FIRAS was reported by Mather et al. (1999) to be 2.725 K, with an uncertainty of just 0.002 K! This is an incredibly high-precision measurement and represents the final nail in the coffin for cosmologies other than the Big Bang. John C. Mather received the Nobel Prize in 2006 for his work as FIRAS’s project lead.

    3
    Figure 3: A comparison of the abilities of the COBE [above], WMAP, and Planck satellites to resolve tiny fluctuations in the CMB temperature, called anisotropies. Image: NASA/JPL-Caltech/ESA (Wikimedia Commons)




    Today, cosmologists use the CMB and its anisotropies to characterize the early history of the universe, find galaxy clusters in the later universe, and even look for new physics! The COBE measurements represented the dawn of a new era in cosmology, and laid the groundwork for modern CMB measurements. The science we do toToday, cosmologists use the CMB and its anisotropies to characterize the early history of the Universe, find galaxy clusters in the later Universe, and even look for new physics! Later full-sky measurements taken by the Wilkinson Microwave Anisotropy Probe (WMAP) and the Planck satellite added never-before-seen levels of precision to our ability to study the structure and content of the Universe, and future missions like LiteBIRD will continue to improve our ability to study the CMB even more closely, building on COBE’s groundbreaking data. These experiments still rely upon the CMB temperature established by FIRAS, which remains the definitive result even 23 years after its publication.

    ___________________________________________________________________
    Inflation

    In physical cosmology, cosmic inflation, cosmological inflation is a theory of exponential expansion of space in the early universe. The inflationary epoch lasted from 10^−36 seconds after the conjectured Big Bang singularity to some time between 10^−33 and 10^−32 seconds after the singularity. Following the inflationary period, the universe continued to expand, but at a slower rate. The acceleration of this expansion due to dark energy began after the universe was already over 7.7 billion years old (5.4 billion years ago).

    Inflation theory was developed in the late 1970s and early 80s, with notable contributions by several theoretical physicists, including Alexei Starobinsky at Landau Institute for Theoretical Physics, Alan Guth at Cornell University, and Andrei Linde at Lebedev Physical Institute. Alexei Starobinsky, Alan Guth, and Andrei Linde won the 2014 Kavli Prize “for pioneering the theory of cosmic inflation.” It was developed further in the early 1980s. It explains the origin of the large-scale structure of the cosmos. Quantum fluctuations in the microscopic inflationary region, magnified to cosmic size, become the seeds for the growth of structure in the Universe. Many physicists also believe that inflation explains why the universe appears to be the same in all directions (isotropic), why the cosmic microwave background radiation is distributed evenly, why the universe is flat, and why no magnetic monopoles have been observed.

    The detailed particle physics mechanism responsible for inflation is unknown. The basic inflationary paradigm is accepted by most physicists, as a number of inflation model predictions have been confirmed by observation; however, a substantial minority of scientists dissent from this position. The hypothetical field thought to be responsible for inflation is called the inflaton.

    In 2002 three of the original architects of the theory were recognized for their major contributions; physicists Alan Guth of M.I.T., Andrei Linde of Stanford, and Paul Steinhardt of Princeton shared the prestigious Dirac Prize “for development of the concept of inflation in cosmology”. In 2012 Guth and Linde were awarded the Breakthrough Prize in Fundamental Physics for their invention and development of inflationary cosmology.

    4
    Alan Guth, from M.I.T., who first proposed Cosmic Inflation.

    Alan Guth’s notes:
    Alan Guth’s original notes on inflation.
    ___________________________________________________________________

    Nobel Prize in Physics for 2011 Expansion of the Universe

    4 October 2011

    The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences has decided to award the Nobel Prize in Physics for 2011

    with one half to

    Saul Perlmutter
    The Supernova Cosmology Project
    The DOE’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and The University of California-Berkeley,

    and the other half jointly to

    Brian P. SchmidtThe High-z Supernova Search Team, The Australian National University, Weston Creek, Australia.

    and

    Adam G. Riess

    The High-z Supernova Search Team,The Johns Hopkins University and The Space Telescope Science Institute, Baltimore, MD.

    Written in the stars

    “Some say the world will end in fire, some say in ice…” *

    What will be the final destiny of the Universe? Probably it will end in ice, if we are to believe this year’s Nobel Laureates in Physics. They have studied several dozen exploding stars, called supernovae, and discovered that the Universe is expanding at an ever-accelerating rate. The discovery came as a complete surprise even to the Laureates themselves.

    In 1998, cosmology was shaken at its foundations as two research teams presented their findings. Headed by Saul Perlmutter, one of the teams had set to work in 1988. Brian Schmidt headed another team, launched at the end of 1994, where Adam Riess was to play a crucial role.

    The research teams raced to map the Universe by locating the most distant supernovae. More sophisticated telescopes on the ground and in space, as well as more powerful computers and new digital imaging sensors (CCD, Nobel Prize in Physics in 2009), opened the possibility in the 1990s to add more pieces to the cosmological puzzle.

    The teams used a particular kind of supernova, called Type 1a supernova. It is an explosion of an old compact star that is as heavy as the Sun but as small as the Earth. A single such supernova can emit as much light as a whole galaxy. All in all, the two research teams found over 50 distant supernovae whose light was weaker than expected – this was a sign that the expansion of the Universe was accelerating. The potential pitfalls had been numerous, and the scientists found reassurance in the fact that both groups had reached the same astonishing conclusion.

    For almost a century, the Universe has been known to be expanding as a consequence of the Big Bang about 14 billion years ago. However, the discovery that this expansion is accelerating is astounding. If the expansion will continue to speed up the Universe will end in ice.

    The acceleration is thought to be driven by dark energy, but what that dark energy is remains an enigma – perhaps the greatest in physics today. What is known is that dark energy constitutes about three quarters of the Universe. Therefore the findings of the 2011 Nobel Laureates in Physics have helped to unveil a Universe that to a large extent is unknown to science. And everything is possible again.

    *Robert Frost, Fire and Ice, 1920
    ______________________________________________________________________________

    See the full article here .

    Comments are invited and will be appreciated, especially if the reader finds any errors which I can correct. Use “Reply”


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    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.


    Stem Education Coalition

    What do we do?

    Astrobites is a daily astrophysical literature journal written by graduate students in astronomy. Our goal is to present one interesting paper per day in a brief format that is accessible to undergraduate students in the physical sciences who are interested in active research.
    Why read Astrobites?

    Reading a technical paper from an unfamiliar subfield is intimidating. It may not be obvious how the techniques used by the researchers really work or what role the new research plays in answering the bigger questions motivating that field, not to mention the obscure jargon! For most people, it takes years for scientific papers to become meaningful.

    Our goal is to solve this problem, one paper at a time. In 5 minutes a day reading Astrobites, you should not only learn about one interesting piece of current work, but also get a peek at the broader picture of research in a new area of astronomy.

     
  • richardmitnick 2:52 pm on February 4, 2023 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "A world with no weak forces", Astronomy, , , ,   

    From particlebites: “A world with no weak forces” 

    particlebites bloc

    From particlebites

    2.4.23
    Nirmal Raj

    Gravity, electromagnetism, strong, and weak — these are the beating hearts of the universe, the four fundamental forces. But do we really need the last one for us to exist?

    Harnik, Kribs and Perez went about building a world without weak interactions and showed that, indeed, life as we know it could emerge there. This was a counter-proof by example to a famous anthropic argument by Agrawal, Barr, Donoghue and Seckel for the puzzling tininess of the weak scale, i.e. the electroweak hierarchy problem.

    1
    Summary of the argument in hep-ph/9707380 that a tiny Higgs mass (in Planck mass units) is necessary for life to develop.

    Let’s ask first: would the Sun be there in a weakless universe? Sunshine is the product of proton fusion, and that’s the strong force. However, the reaction chain is ignited by the weak force!

    2
    image: Eric G. Blackman.

    So would no stars shine in a weakless world? Amazingly, there’s another route to trigger stellar burning: deuteron-proton fusion via the strong force! In our world, gas clouds collapsing into stars do not take this option because deuterons are very rare, with protons outnumbering them by 50,000. But we need not carry this, er, weakness into our gedanken universe. We can tune the baryon-to-photon ratio — whose origin is unknown — so that we end up with roughly as many deuterons as protons from the primordial synthesis of nuclei. Harnik et al. go on to show that, as in our universe, elements up to iron can be cooked in weakless stars, that they live for billions of years, and may explode in supernovae that disperse heavy elements into the interstellar medium.

    3
    source: hep-ph/0604027

    A “weakless” universe is arranged by elevating the electroweak scale or the Higgs vacuum expectation value (\approx 246 GeV) to, say, the Planck scale (\approx 10^{19} GeV). To get the desired nucleosynthesis, care must be taken to keep the u, d, s quarks and the electron at their usual mass by tuning the Yukawa couplings, which are technically natural.

    And let’s not forget dark matter. To make stars, one needs galaxy-like structures. And to make those, density perturbations must be gravitationally condensed by a large population of matter. In the weakless world of Harnik et al., hyperons make up some of the dark matter, but you would also need much other dark stuff such as your favourite non-WIMP.

    If you believe in the string landscape, a weakless world isn’t just a hypothetical. Someone somewhere might be speculating about a habitable universe with a fourth fundamental force, explaining to their bemused colleagues: “It’s kinda like the strong force, only weak…”

    4

    Bibliography

    Viable range of the mass scale of the standard model
    V. Agrawal, S. M. Barr, J. F. Donoghue, D. Seckel, Phys.Rev.D 57 (1998) 5480-5492.

    A Universe without weak interactions
    R. Harnik, G. D. Kribs, G. Perez, Phys.Rev.D 74 (2006) 035006

    Further reading

    Gedanken Worlds without Higgs: QCD-Induced Electroweak Symmetry Breaking
    C. Quigg, R. Shrock, Phys.Rev.D 79 (2009) 096002

    The Multiverse and Particle Physics
    J. F. Donoghue, Ann.Rev.Nucl.Part.Sci. 66 (2016)

    The eighteen arbitrary parameters of the standard model in your everyday life
    R. N. Cahn, Rev. Mod. Phys. 68, 951 (1996)

    See the full article here .

    Comments are invited and will be appreciated, especially if the reader finds any errors which I can correct. Use “Reply”.

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    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.

    Stem Education Coalition

    What is ParticleBites?
    ParticleBites is an online particle physics journal club written by graduate students and postdocs. Each post presents an interesting paper in a brief format that is accessible to undergraduate students in the physical sciences who are interested in active research.

    The papers are accessible on the arXiv preprint server. Most of our posts are based on papers from hep-ph (high energy phenomenology) and hep-ex (high energy experiment).

    Why read ParticleBites?

    Reading a technical paper from an unfamiliar subfield is intimidating. It may not be obvious how the techniques used by the researchers really work or what role the new research plays in answering the bigger questions motivating that field, not to mention the obscure jargon! For most people, it takes years for scientific papers to become meaningful.

    Our goal is to solve this problem, one paper at a time. With each brief ParticleBite, you should not only learn about one interesting piece of current work, but also get a peek at the broader picture of research in particle physics.

    Who writes ParticleBites?

    ParticleBites is written and edited by graduate students and postdocs working in high energy physics. Feel free to contact us if you’re interested in applying to write for ParticleBites.

    ParticleBites was founded in 2013 by Flip Tanedo following the Communicating Science (ComSciCon) 2013 workshop.

    2
    Flip Tanedo UCI Chancellor’s ADVANCE postdoctoral scholar in theoretical physics. As of July 2016, I will be an assistant professor of physics at the University of California, Riverside

    It is now organized and directed by Flip and Julia Gonski, with ongoing guidance from Nathan Sanders.

     
  • richardmitnick 2:21 pm on February 4, 2023 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "Serendipitous detection of a rapidly accreting black hole in the early Universe", Astronomy, , , , , eRosita Russian German space X-ray telescope, The MPG Institute for Extraterrestrial Physics [MPG Institut für Extraterrestrische Physik](DE)   

    From The MPG Institute for Extraterrestrial Physics [MPG Institut für Extraterrestrische Physik](DE): “Serendipitous detection of a rapidly accreting black hole in the early Universe” 

    From The MPG Institute for Extraterrestrial Physics [MPG Institut für Extraterrestrische Physik](DE)

    1.31.23

    Wolf, Julien
    phd student
    Tel +49 89 30000-3879
    Fax +49 89 30000-3569
    jwolf@mpe.mpg.de

    Salvato, Mara
    Senior Scientist
    Tel +49 89 30000-3815
    Fax +49 89 30000-3569
    mara@mpe.mpg.de

    Nandra, Kirpal
    director
    Tel +49 89 30000-3401
    Fax +49 89 30000-3569
    knandra@mpe.mpg.de

    eROSITA telescope finds an X-ray bright, optically faint quasar accreting material at an extremely high rate only about 800 million years after the big bang.

    Analyzing data from the eROSITA Final Equatorial-Depth Survey, astronomers at MPE have found a faint X-ray source identified with a very distant supermassive black hole that is accreting material at an extremely high rate. This quasar, at a redshift of z=6.56, is much more luminous in X-rays than expected. This is the most distant blind X-ray detection to date, from an object whose radiation was emitted almost 13 billion years ago and allows the scientists to investigate the growth of black holes in the early Universe.

    Supermassive black holes at the centres of galaxies can be detected out to great distances – but only if they accrete matter, which heats up and shines brightly, causing it to become an “active galactic nucleus” (AGN). These “quasars” or quasi-stellar objects then outshine the rest of their galaxy, but at large distances, they nevertheless are difficult to detect and extremely rare. To date, only about 50 quasars with redshift z>5.7, when the Universe was less than one billion years old, have been detected in X-rays.

    2
    A new, faint X-ray source (right) was found in the eROSITA Final Equatorial-Depth Survey (eFEDS). Using optical follow-up observations (left top), the eROSITA team identified this as a quasar at a redshift of z=6.56. Quasars are powered by a central supermassive black hole, accreting material at a high rate. This is the most distant blind X-ray detection to date and allows the scientists to investigate the growth of black holes in the early Universe. Collage: MPE/Cluster Origins.

    Analyzing X-ray data of the eROSITA Final Equatorial-Depth Survey (eFEDS), which were taken during the Performance Verification Phase of the eROSITA telescope in 2019, the eROSITA team found a new point source. In collaboration with colleagues using the Subaru telescope, they identified the X-ray emission with a previously known quasar J0921+0007 at a redshift of 6.56, which was initially discovered by a team searching for distant sources with the Subaru telescope.


    Dedicated follow-up observations at infrared wavelengths showed that the black hole has 250 million solar masses, a relatively low mass for a supermassive black hole at this distance. Chandra follow-up observations confirmed the high X-ray luminosity measured by eROSITA, indicating a very high accretion rate.

    “We did not expect to find such a low-mass AGN already in our very first mini-survey with eROSITA”, says Julien Wolf, who searches for the most distant supermassive black holes in eROSITA data as part of his Ph.D. at the Max Planck Institute for Extraterrestrial Physics (MPE). “It is the most distant serendipitous X-ray detection to date and its properties are rather atypical for quasars at such high redshifts: it is intrinsically faint in visible light but very luminous in X-rays.”

    The quasar detected by eROSITA shows properties, which are similar to so-called narrow-line Seyfert-1 galaxies, a particular class of active galaxies in the local Universe. They are associated with supermassive black holes below 100 million solar masses, accreting matter at a high rate, and could be younger than their higher mass siblings.

    “Hunting for rare objects like this needs deep multi-wavelength data complementing the large X-ray survey area. Luckily, most of the sky is mapped at optical and infrared wavelengths, although the Subaru data in eFEDS area are especially deep,” emphasises Mara Salvato, eROSITA spokesperson.

    3
    X-ray image cutouts in the region of J0921+0007. The eROSITA/eFEDS image is on the left, the high-resolution Chandra image is on the right. © MPE

    While the bulk of active galaxies detected at high redshifts (i.e. large distances) host black holes with masses of one to ten billion solar masses, there must also be many with less massive black holes. These, however, need to accrete matter at a very high rate to shine brightly enough so that they can be detected at all.

    In addition to this source, the team had earlier found another luminous and similarly distant quasar in the same field. “eROSITA is uniquely suited to performing a census of rare X-ray objects like these powerful high-redshift quasars,” states Kirpal Nandra, director of high-energy physics at MPE. “This is now the second example we’ve found in eFEDS when we expected to find none”.

    The early eROSITA data are just a foretaste of what’s to come. Based on these early detections, the scientists expect to find hundreds more examples with the eROSITA all-sky survey. In an effort to find this elusive population of yet unknown distant quasars, the group has developed a large programme exploring the eROSITA all-sky survey. This dedicated survey has already led to the discovery of five new X-ray luminous quasars at z>5.6, which will be presented in a future publication. Simultaneously, a Russian team of researchers have also reported the first eROSITA high-redshift detections in the northern hemisphere.

    Objects like these are currently our best way of understanding early black hole formation. If the surprising eFEDS detections are confirmed in the larger dataset, it could represent a challenge for some evolutionary models.

    Astronomy & Astrophysics

    See the full article here .

    Comments are invited and will be appreciated, especially if the reader finds any errors which I can correct. Use “Reply”.

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    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.

    Stem Education Coalition

    For their astrophysical research, The MPG Institute for Extraterrestrial Physics [MPG Institut für Extraterrestrische Physik]( DE) scientists measure the radiation of far away objects in different wavelenths areas: from millimetere/sub-millimetre and infared all the way to X-ray and gamma-ray wavelengths. These methods span more than twelve decades of the electromagnetic spectrum.

    The research topics pursued at MPE range from the physics of cosmic plasmas and of stars to the physics and chemistry of interstellar matter, from star formation and nucleosynthesis to extragalactic astrophysics and cosmology. The interaction with observers and experimentalists in the institute not only leads to better consolidated efforts but also helps to identify new, promising research areas early on.

    The structural development of the institute mainly has been directed by the desire to work on cutting-edge experimental, astrophysical topics using instruments developed in-house. This includes individual detectors, spectrometers and cameras but also telescopes and integrated, complete payloads. Therefore the engineering and workshop areas are especially important for the close interlink between scientific and technical aspects.

    The scientific work is done in four major research areas that are supervised by one of the directors:

    Center for Astrochemical Studies (CAS)
    High-Energy Astrophysics
    Infrared/Submillimeter Astronomy
    Optical & Interpretative Astronomy

    Within these areas scientists lead individual experiments and research projects organized in about 25 project teams.

    MPG Society for the Advancement of Science [MPG Gesellschaft zur Förderung der Wissenschaften e. V.] (DE)is a formally independent non-governmental and non-profit association of German research institutes founded in 1911 as the Kaiser Wilhelm Society and renamed the Max Planck Society in 1948 in honor of its former president, theoretical physicist Max Planck. The society is funded by the federal and state governments of Germany as well as other sources.

    According to its primary goal, the MPG Society supports fundamental research in the natural, life and social sciences, the arts and humanities in its 83 (as of January 2014) MPG Institutes. The society has a total staff of approximately 17,000 permanent employees, including 5,470 scientists, plus around 4,600 non-tenured scientists and guests. Society budget for 2015 was about €1.7 billion.

    The MPG Institutes focus on excellence in research. The MPG Society has a world-leading reputation as a science and technology research organization, with 33 Nobel Prizes awarded to their scientists, and is generally regarded as the foremost basic research organization in Europe and the world. In 2013, the Nature Publishing Index placed the MPG institutes fifth worldwide in terms of research published in Nature journals (after Harvard University, The Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Stanford University and The National Institutes of Health). In terms of total research volume (unweighted by citations or impact), the Max Planck Society is only outranked by The Chinese Academy of Sciences [中国科学院](CN), The Russian Academy of Sciences [Росси́йская акаде́мия нау́к](RU) and Harvard University. The Thomson Reuters-Science Watch website placed the MPG Society as the second leading research organization worldwide following Harvard University, in terms of the impact of the produced research over science fields.

    The MPG Society and its predecessor Kaiser Wilhelm Society hosted several renowned scientists in their fields, including Otto Hahn, Werner Heisenberg, and Albert Einstein.

    History

    The organization was established in 1911 as the Kaiser Wilhelm Society, or Kaiser-Wilhelm-Gesellschaft (KWG), a non-governmental research organization named for the then German emperor. The KWG was one of the world’s leading research organizations; its board of directors included scientists like Walther Bothe, Peter Debye, Albert Einstein, and Fritz Haber. In 1946, Otto Hahn assumed the position of President of KWG, and in 1948, the society was renamed the Max Planck Society (MPG) after its former President (1930–37) Max Planck, who died in 1947.

    The MPG Society has a world-leading reputation as a science and technology research organization. In 2006, the Times Higher Education Supplement rankings of non-university research institutions (based on international peer review by academics) placed the MPG Society as No.1 in the world for science research, and No.3 in technology research (behind AT&T Corporation and The DOE’s Argonne National Laboratory.

    The domain mpg.de attracted at least 1.7 million visitors annually by 2008 according to a Compete.com study.

    MPG Institutes and research groups

    The MPG Society consists of over 80 research institutes. In addition, the society funds a number of Max Planck Research Groups (MPRG) and International Max Planck Research Schools (IMPRS). The purpose of establishing independent research groups at various universities is to strengthen the required networking between universities and institutes of the Max Planck Society.
    The research units are primarily located across Europe with a few in South Korea and the U.S. In 2007, the Society established its first non-European centre, with an institute on the Jupiter campus of Florida Atlantic University (US) focusing on neuroscience.
    The MPG Institutes operate independently from, though in close cooperation with, the universities, and focus on innovative research which does not fit into the university structure due to their interdisciplinary or transdisciplinary nature or which require resources that cannot be met by the state universities.

    Internally, MPG Institutes are organized into research departments headed by directors such that each MPI has several directors, a position roughly comparable to anything from full professor to department head at a university. Other core members include Junior and Senior Research Fellows.

    In addition, there are several associated institutes:

    International Max Planck Research Schools

    International Max Planck Research Schools

    Together with the Association of Universities and other Education Institutions in Germany, the Max Planck Society established numerous International Max Planck Research Schools (IMPRS) to promote junior scientists:

    • Cologne Graduate School of Ageing Research, Cologne
    • International Max Planck Research School for Intelligent Systems, at the Max Planck Institute for Intelligent Systems located in Tübingen and Stuttgart
    • International Max Planck Research School on Adapting Behavior in a Fundamentally Uncertain World (Uncertainty School), at the Max Planck Institutes for Economics, for Human Development, and/or Research on Collective Goods
    • International Max Planck Research School for Analysis, Design and Optimization in Chemical and Biochemical Process Engineering, Magdeburg
    • International Max Planck Research School for Astronomy and Cosmic Physics, Heidelberg at the MPI for Astronomy
    • International Max Planck Research School for Astrophysics, Garching at the MPI for Astrophysics
    • International Max Planck Research School for Complex Surfaces in Material Sciences, Berlin
    • International Max Planck Research School for Computer Science, Saarbrücken
    • International Max Planck Research School for Earth System Modeling, Hamburg
    • International Max Planck Research School for Elementary Particle Physics, Munich, at the MPI for Physics
    • International Max Planck Research School for Environmental, Cellular and Molecular Microbiology, Marburg at the Max Planck Institute for Terrestrial Microbiology
    • International Max Planck Research School for Evolutionary Biology, Plön at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Biology
    • International Max Planck Research School “From Molecules to Organisms”, Tübingen at the Max Planck Institute for Developmental Biology
    • International Max Planck Research School for Global Biogeochemical Cycles, Jena at the Max Planck Institute for Biogeochemistry
    • International Max Planck Research School on Gravitational Wave Astronomy, Hannover and Potsdam MPI for Gravitational Physics
    • International Max Planck Research School for Heart and Lung Research, Bad Nauheim at the Max Planck Institute for Heart and Lung Research
    • International Max Planck Research School for Infectious Diseases and Immunity, Berlin at the Max Planck Institute for Infection Biology
    • International Max Planck Research School for Language Sciences, Nijmegen
    • International Max Planck Research School for Neurosciences, Göttingen
    • International Max Planck Research School for Cognitive and Systems Neuroscience, Tübingen
    • International Max Planck Research School for Marine Microbiology (MarMic), joint program of the Max Planck Institute for Marine Microbiology in Bremen, the University of Bremen, the Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research in Bremerhaven, and the Jacobs University Bremen
    • International Max Planck Research School for Maritime Affairs, Hamburg
    • International Max Planck Research School for Molecular and Cellular Biology, Freiburg
    • International Max Planck Research School for Molecular and Cellular Life Sciences, Munich
    • International Max Planck Research School for Molecular Biology, Göttingen
    • International Max Planck Research School for Molecular Cell Biology and Bioengineering, Dresden
    • International Max Planck Research School Molecular Biomedicine, program combined with the ‘Graduate Programm Cell Dynamics And Disease’ at the University of Münster and the Max Planck Institute for Molecular Biomedicine
    • International Max Planck Research School on Multiscale Bio-Systems, Potsdam
    • International Max Planck Research School for Organismal Biology, at the University of Konstanz and the Max Planck Institute for Ornithology
    • International Max Planck Research School on Reactive Structure Analysis for Chemical Reactions (IMPRS RECHARGE), Mülheim an der Ruhr, at the Max Planck Institute for Chemical Energy Conversion
    • International Max Planck Research School for Science and Technology of Nano-Systems, Halle at Max Planck Institute of Microstructure Physics
    • International Max Planck Research School for Solar System Science at the University of Göttingen hosted by MPI for Solar System Research
    • International Max Planck Research School for Astronomy and Astrophysics, Bonn, at the MPI for Radio Astronomy (formerly the International Max Planck Research School for Radio and Infrared Astronomy)
    • International Max Planck Research School for the Social and Political Constitution of the Economy, Cologne
    • International Max Planck Research School for Surface and Interface Engineering in Advanced Materials, Düsseldorf at Max Planck Institute for Iron Research GmbH
    • International Max Planck Research School for Ultrafast Imaging and Structural Dynamics, Hamburg

    Max Planck Schools

    • Max Planck School of Cognition
    • Max Planck School Matter to Life
    • Max Planck School of Photonics

    Max Planck Center

    • The Max Planck Centre for Attosecond Science (MPC-AS), POSTECH Pohang
    • The Max Planck POSTECH Center for Complex Phase Materials, POSTECH Pohang

    Max Planck Institutes

    Among others:
    • Max Planck Institute for Neurobiology of Behavior – caesar, Bonn
    • Max Planck Institute for Aeronomics in Katlenburg-Lindau was renamed to Max Planck Institute for Solar System Research in 2004;
    • Max Planck Institute for Biology in Tübingen was closed in 2005;
    • Max Planck Institute for Cell Biology in Ladenburg b. Heidelberg was closed in 2003;
    • Max Planck Institute for Economics in Jena was renamed to the Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History in 2014;
    • Max Planck Institute for Ionospheric Research in Katlenburg-Lindau was renamed to Max Planck Institute for Aeronomics in 1958;
    • Max Planck Institute for Metals Research, Stuttgart
    • Max Planck Institute of Oceanic Biology in Wilhelmshaven was renamed to Max Planck Institute of Cell Biology in 1968 and moved to Ladenburg 1977;
    • Max Planck Institute for Psychological Research in Munich merged into the Max Planck Institute for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences in 2004;
    • Max Planck Institute for Protein and Leather Research in Regensburg moved to Munich 1957 and was united with the Max Planck Institute for Biochemistry in 1977;
    • Max Planck Institute for Virus Research in Tübingen was renamed as Max Planck Institute for Developmental Biology in 1985;
    • Max Planck Institute for the Study of the Scientific-Technical World in Starnberg (from 1970 until 1981 (closed)) directed by Carl Friedrich von Weizsäcker and Jürgen Habermas.
    • Max Planck Institute for Behavioral Physiology
    • Max Planck Institute of Experimental Endocrinology
    • Max Planck Institute for Foreign and International Social Law
    • Max Planck Institute for Physics and Astrophysics
    • Max Planck Research Unit for Enzymology of Protein Folding
    • Max Planck Institute for Biology of Ageing

     
  • richardmitnick 12:56 pm on February 4, 2023 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "3 new studies indicate a conflict at the heart of cosmology", "The Big Think", Astronomy, , , , , ,   

    From “The Big Think” : “3 new studies indicate a conflict at the heart of cosmology” 

    From “The Big Think”

    2.1.23
    Don Lincoln

    The Universe isn’t as “clumpy” as we think it should be.

    1
    Credit: NASA.

    Key Takeaways

    Telescopes are essentially time machines. As we examine galaxies that are at greater and greater distances from the Earth, we are looking further and further back in time. A new series of studies that examine the “clumpiness” of the Universe indicates that there might be a conflict at the heart of cosmology. The Big Bang theory is still sound, but it may need to be tweaked.

    A series of three scientific papers describing the expansion history of the Universe is telling a confusing tale, with predictions and measurements slightly disagreeing.

    While this disagreement isn’t considered a fatal disproof of modern cosmology, it could be a hint that our theories need to be revised.

    PRD “Joint analysis of DES Year 3 data and CMB lensing from SPT and Planck I: Construction of CMB Lensing Maps and Modeling Choices”
    PRD “Joint analysis of DES Year 3 data and CMB lensing from SPT and Planck II: Cross-correlation measurements and cosmological constraints”
    PRD “Joint analysis of DES Year 3 data and CMB lensing from SPT and Planck III: Combined cosmological constraints”

    Creation stories, both ancient and modern

    Understanding exactly how the world around us came into existence is a question that has bothered humanity for millennia. All around the world, people have devised stories — from the ancient Greek legend of the creation of the Earth and other primordial entities from Chaos (as first written down by Hesiod) to the Hopi creation myth (which describes a series of different kinds of creatures being created, eventually ending up as humans).

    In modern times, there are still competing creation stories, but there is one that is grounded in empiricism and the scientific method: the idea that about 13.8 billion years ago, the Universe began in a much smaller and hotter compressed state, and it has been expanding ever since then. This idea is colloquially called the “Big Bang,” although different writers use the term to mean slightly different things. Some use it to refer to the exact moment at which the Universe came into existence and began to expand, while others use it to refer to all moments after the beginning. For those writers, the Big Bang is still ongoing, as the expansion of the Universe continues.

    The beauty of this scientific explanation is that it can be tested. Astronomers rely on the fact that light has a finite speed, which means that it takes time for light to cross the cosmos. For example, the light we see as the Sun shining was emitted eight minutes before we see it. Light from the nearest star took about four years to get to Earth, and light from elsewhere in the cosmos can take billions of years to arrive.

    The telescope as a time machine

    Effectively, this means that telescopes are time machines. By looking at more and more distant galaxies, astronomers are able to see what the Universe looked like in the distant past. By stitching together observations of galaxies at different distances from the Earth, astronomers can unravel the evolution of the cosmos.

    The recent measurements use two different telescopes to study the structure of the Universe at different cosmic epochs. One facility, called the South Pole Telescope (SPT), looks at the earliest possible light, emitted a mere 380,000 years after the Universe began.

    At that time, the Universe was 0.003% its current age. If we consider the current cosmos to be equivalent to a 50-year-old person, the SPT looks at the Universe when it was a mere 12 hours old.

    The second facility is called the Dark Energy Survey (DES).
    ___________________________________________________________________
    The Dark Energy Survey

    Dark Energy Camera [DECam] built at The DOE’s Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory.

    NOIRLab National Optical Astronomy Observatory Cerro Tololo Inter-American Observatory (CL) Victor M Blanco 4m Telescope which houses the Dark-Energy-Camera – DECam at Cerro Tololo, Chile at an altitude of 7200 feet.

    NOIRLabNSF NOIRLab NOAO Cerro Tololo Inter-American Observatory(CL) approximately 80 km to the East of La Serena, Chile, at an altitude of 2200 meters.

    The Dark Energy Survey is an international, collaborative effort to map hundreds of millions of galaxies, detect thousands of supernovae, and find patterns of cosmic structure that will reveal the nature of the mysterious dark energy that is accelerating the expansion of our Universe. The Dark Energy Survey began searching the Southern skies on August 31, 2013.

    According to Albert Einstein’s Theory of General Relativity, gravity should lead to a slowing of the cosmic expansion. Yet, in 1998, two teams of astronomers studying distant supernovae made the remarkable discovery that the expansion of the universe is speeding up.

    Nobel Prize in Physics for 2011 Expansion of the Universe

    4 October 2011

    The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences has decided to award the Nobel Prize in Physics for 2011

    with one half to

    Saul Perlmutter
    The Supernova Cosmology Project
    The DOE’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and The University of California-Berkeley,

    and the other half jointly to

    Brian P. Schmidt
    The High-z Supernova Search Team,
    The Australian National University, Weston Creek, Australia.

    and

    Adam G. Riess
    The High-z Supernova Search Team,The Johns Hopkins University and
    The Space Telescope Science Institute, Baltimore, MD.
    Written in the stars

    “Some say the world will end in fire, some say in ice…” *

    What will be the final destiny of the Universe? Probably it will end in ice, if we are to believe this year’s Nobel Laureates in Physics. They have studied several dozen exploding stars, called supernovae, and discovered that the Universe is expanding at an ever-accelerating rate. The discovery came as a complete surprise even to the Laureates themselves.

    In 1998, cosmology was shaken at its foundations as two research teams presented their findings. Headed by Saul Perlmutter, one of the teams had set to work in 1988. Brian Schmidt headed another team, launched at the end of 1994, where Adam Riess was to play a crucial role.

    The research teams raced to map the Universe by locating the most distant supernovae. More sophisticated telescopes on the ground and in space, as well as more powerful computers and new digital imaging sensors (CCD, Nobel Prize in Physics in 2009), opened the possibility in the 1990s to add more pieces to the cosmological puzzle.

    The teams used a particular kind of supernova, called Type 1a supernova. It is an explosion of an old compact star that is as heavy as the Sun but as small as the Earth. A single such supernova can emit as much light as a whole galaxy. All in all, the two research teams found over 50 distant supernovae whose light was weaker than expected – this was a sign that the expansion of the Universe was accelerating. The potential pitfalls had been numerous, and the scientists found reassurance in the fact that both groups had reached the same astonishing conclusion.

    For almost a century, the Universe has been known to be expanding as a consequence of the Big Bang about 14 billion years ago. However, the discovery that this expansion is accelerating is astounding. If the expansion will continue to speed up the Universe will end in ice.

    The acceleration is thought to be driven by dark energy, but what that dark energy is remains an enigma – perhaps the greatest in physics today. What is known is that dark energy constitutes about three quarters of the Universe. Therefore the findings of the 2011 Nobel Laureates in Physics have helped to unveil a Universe that to a large extent is unknown to science. And everything is possible again.

    *Robert Frost, Fire and Ice, 1920
    ___________________________________________________________________
    To explain cosmic acceleration, cosmologists are faced with two possibilities: either 70% of the universe exists in an exotic form, now called Dark Energy, that exhibits a gravitational force opposite to the attractive gravity of ordinary matter, or Albert Einstein’s Theory of General Relativity must be replaced by a new theory of gravity on cosmic scales.

    The Dark Energy Survey is designed to probe the origin of the accelerating universe and help uncover the nature of Dark Energy by measuring the 14-billion-year history of cosmic expansion with high precision. More than 400 scientists from over 25 institutions in the United States, Spain, the United Kingdom, Brazil, Germany, Switzerland, and Australia are working on the project. The collaboration built and is using an extremely sensitive 570-Megapixel digital camera, DECam, mounted on the Blanco 4-meter telescope at Cerro Tololo Inter-American Observatory, high in the Chilean Andes, to carry out the project.

    Over six years (2013-2019), the Dark Energy Survey collaboration used 758 nights of observation to carry out a deep, wide-area survey to record information from 300 million galaxies that are billions of light-years from Earth. The survey imaged 5000 square degrees of the southern sky in five optical filters to obtain detailed information about each galaxy. A fraction of the survey time is used to observe smaller patches of sky roughly once a week to discover and study thousands of supernovae and other astrophysical transients.
    ___________________________________________________________________
    This is a very powerful telescope located on a mountain top in Chile. Over the years, it has surveyed about 1/8 of the sky and photographed over 300 million galaxies, many of which are so dim, they are about one-millionth as bright as the dimmest stars visible to the human eye. This telescope can image galaxies from the current day to as far back as eight billion years ago. Continuing with the analogy of a 50-year-old individual, DES can take pictures of the Universe starting when it was 21 years old up until the present. (Full disclosure: Researchers at Fermilab, where I also work, carried out this study — but I did not participate in this research.)

    As light from distant galaxies travels to Earth, it can be distorted by galaxies that are closer to us. By using these tiny distortions, astronomers have developed a very precise map of the distribution of matter in the cosmos. This map includes both ordinary matter, of which stars and galaxies are the most familiar examples, and dark matter, which is a hypothesized form of matter that neither absorbs nor emits light. Dark matter is only observed through its gravitational effect on other objects and is thought to be five times more prevalent than ordinary matter.
    __________________________________
    Dark Matter Background
    Fritz Zwicky discovered Dark Matter in the 1930s when observing the movement of the Coma Cluster., and Vera Rubin a Woman in STEM, denied the Nobel, some 30 years later, did most of the work on Dark Matter.

    Fritz Zwicky.

    Coma cluster via NASA/ESA Hubble, the original example of Dark Matter discovered during observations by Fritz Zwicky and confirmed 30 years later by Vera Rubin.

    In modern times, it was astronomer Fritz Zwicky, in the 1930s, who made the first observations of what we now call dark matter. His 1933 observations of the Coma Cluster of galaxies seemed to indicated it has a mass 500 times more than that previously calculated by Edwin Hubble. Furthermore, this extra mass seemed to be completely invisible. Although Zwicky’s observations were initially met with much skepticism, they were later confirmed by other groups of astronomers.

    Thirty years later, astronomer Vera Rubin provided a huge piece of evidence for the existence of dark matter. She discovered that the centers of galaxies rotate at the same speed as their extremities, whereas, of course, they should rotate faster. Think of a vinyl LP on a record deck: its center rotates faster than its edge. That’s what logic dictates we should see in galaxies too. But we do not. The only way to explain this is if the whole galaxy is only the center of some much larger structure, as if it is only the label on the LP so to speak, causing the galaxy to have a consistent rotation speed from center to edge.

    Vera Rubin, following Zwicky, postulated that the missing structure in galaxies is dark matter. Her ideas were met with much resistance from the astronomical community, but her observations have been confirmed and are seen today as pivotal proof of the existence of dark matter.

    Astronomer Vera Rubin at the Lowell Observatory in 1965, worked on Dark Matter (The Carnegie Institution for Science).

    Vera Rubin, with Department of Terrestrial Magnetism (DTM) image tube spectrograph attached to the Kitt Peak 84-inch telescope, 1970.

    Vera Rubin measuring spectra, worked on Dark Matter(Emilio Segre Visual Archives AIP SPL).

    Dark Matter Research

    Super Cryogenic Dark Matter Search from DOE’s SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory at Stanford University at SNOLAB (Vale Inco Mine, Sudbury, Canada).

    LBNL LZ Dark Matter Experiment xenon detector at Sanford Underground Research Facility Credit: Matt Kapust.


    DAMA at Gran Sasso uses sodium iodide housed in copper to hunt for dark matter LNGS-INFN.

    Yale HAYSTAC axion dark matter experiment at Yale’s Wright Lab.

    DEAP Dark Matter detector, The DEAP-3600, suspended in the SNOLAB (CA) deep in Sudbury’s Creighton Mine.

    The LBNL LZ Dark Matter Experiment Dark Matter project at SURF, Lead, SD.

    DAMA-LIBRA Dark Matter experiment at the Italian National Institute for Nuclear Physics’ (INFN’s) Gran Sasso National Laboratories (LNGS) located in the Abruzzo region of central Italy.

    DARWIN Dark Matter experiment. A design study for a next-generation, multi-ton dark matter detector in Europe at The University of Zurich [Universität Zürich](CH).

    PandaX II Dark Matter experiment at Jin-ping Underground Laboratory (CJPL) in Sichuan, China.

    Inside the Axion Dark Matter eXperiment U Washington. Credit: Mark Stone U. of Washington. Axion Dark Matter Experiment.

    3
    The University of Western Australia ORGAN Experiment’s main detector. A small copper cylinder called a “resonant cavity” traps photons generated during dark matter conversion. The cylinder is bolted to a “dilution refrigerator” which cools the experiment to very low temperatures.
    __________________________________

    Is the Big Bang incomplete?

    In order to test the Big Bang, astronomers can use measurements taken by the South Pole Telescope and use the theory to project forward to the present day. They can then take measurements from the Dark Energy Survey and compare them. If the measurements are accurate and the theory describes the cosmos, they should agree.

    And, by and large, they do — but not completely. When astronomers look at how “clumpy” the matter of the current Universe should be, purely from SPT measurements and extrapolations of theory, they find that the predictions are “clumpier” than current measurements by DES.

    This disagreement is potentially significant and could signal that the theory of the Big Bang is incomplete. Furthermore, this isn’t the first discrepancy that astronomers have encountered when they project measurements of the same primordial light imaged by the SPT to the modern day. Different research groups, using different telescopes, have found that the current Universe is expanding faster than expected from observations of the ancient light seen by the SPT, combined with Big Bang theory. This other discrepancy is called the Hubble Tension, named after American astronomer Edwin Hubble, who first realized that the Universe was expanding.

    __________________________________________________________________________________

    Edwin Hubble

    .

    __________________________________________________________________________________


    Have astronomers disproved the Big Bang?

    While the new discrepancy in predictions and measurements of the clumpiness of the Universe are preliminary, it could be that both this measurement and the Hubble Tension imply that the Big Bang theory might need some tweaking. Mind you, the discrepancies do not rise to the level of scrapping the theory entirely; however, it is the nature of the scientific method to adjust theories to account for new observations.

    See the full article here.

    Comments are invited and will be appreciated, especially if the reader finds any errors which I can correct. Use “Reply”.

    five-ways-keep-your-child-safe-school-shootings

    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.

    Stem Education Coalition

     
  • richardmitnick 8:12 am on February 4, 2023 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "Astronomers Studied More Than 5000 Black Holes to Figure Out Why They Twinkle", Astronomy, , , , ,   

    From “The Conversation (AU)” : “Astronomers Studied More Than 5000 Black Holes to Figure Out Why They Twinkle” 

    From “The Conversation (AU)”

    2.4.23
    Christian Wolf

    Black holes are bizarre things, even by the standards of astronomers. Their mass is so great it bends space around them so tightly that nothing can escape, even light itself.

    And yet, despite their famous blackness, some black holes are quite visible. The gas and stars these galactic vacuums devour are sucked into a glowing disc before their one-way trip into the hole, and these discs can shine more brightly than entire galaxies.

    Stranger still, these black holes twinkle.

    1
    This illustration shows a disk of hot gas swirling around a black hole. The stream of gas stretching to the right is what remains of a star that was pulled apart by the black hole. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech.

    The brightness of the glowing discs can fluctuate from day to day, and nobody is entirely sure why.

    We piggy-backed on NASA’s asteroid defense effort to watch more than 5,000 of the fastest-growing black holes in the sky for five years in an attempt to understand why this twinkling occurs.

    In a new paper in Nature Astronomy [below], we report our answer: a kind of turbulence driven by friction and intense gravitational and magnetic fields.

    Gigantic star-eaters

    We study supermassive black holes, the kind that sit at the centers of galaxies and are as massive as millions or billions of Suns.

    Our own galaxy, the Milky Way, has one of these giants at its center, with a mass of about four million Suns.

    For the most part, the 200 billion or so stars that make up the rest of the galaxy (including our Sun) happily orbit around the black hole at the center.

    However, things are not so peaceful in all galaxies. When pairs of galaxies pull on each other via gravity, many stars may end up tugged too close to their galaxy’s black hole. This ends badly for the stars: They are torn apart and devoured.

    We are confident this must have happened in galaxies with black holes that weigh as much as a billion Suns, because we can’t imagine how else they could have grown so large. It may also have happened in the Milky Way in the past.

    Black holes can also feed in a slower, more gentle way: by sucking in clouds of gas blown out by geriatric stars known as red giants.

    Feeding time

    In our new study, we looked closely at the feeding process among the 5,000 fastest-growing black holes in the Universe.

    In earlier studies, we discovered the black holes with the most voracious appetite. Last year, we found a black hole that eats an Earth’s-worth of stuff every second [PASA (below)]. In 2018, we found one that eats a whole Sun every 48 hours [PASA (below)].

    But we have lots of questions about their actual feeding behavior. We know material on its way into the hole spirals into a glowing “accretion disc” that can be bright enough to outshine entire galaxies. These visibly feeding black holes are called quasars.

    Most of these black holes are a long, long way away – much too far for us to see any detail of the disc. We have some images of accretion discs around nearby black holes, but they are merely breathing in some cosmic gas rather than feasting on stars.

    Five years of flickering black holes

    In our new work, we used data from NASA’s ATLAS telescope in Hawaii.


    It scans the entire sky every night (weather permitting), monitoring for asteroids approaching Earth from the outer darkness.

    These whole-sky scans also happen to provide a nightly record of the glow of hungry black holes, deep in the background. Our team put together a five-year movie of each of those black holes, showing the day-to-day changes in brightness caused by the bubbling and boiling glowing maelstrom of the accretion disc.

    The twinkling of these black holes can tell us something about accretion discs.

    In 1998, astrophysicists Steven Balbus and John Hawley proposed a theory of “magneto-rotational instabilities” that describes how magnetic fields can cause turbulence in the discs [Reviews of Modern Physics (below)]. If that is the right idea, then the discs should sizzle in regular patterns.

    They would twinkle in random patterns that unfold as the discs orbit. Larger discs orbit more slowly with a slow twinkle, while tighter and faster orbits in smaller discs twinkle more rapidly.

    But would the discs in the real world prove this simple, without any further complexities? (Whether “simple” is the right word for turbulence in an ultra-dense, out-of-control environment embedded in intense gravitational and magnetic fields where space itself is bent to breaking point is perhaps a separate question.)

    Using statistical methods, we measured how much the light emitted from our 5,000 discs flickered over time. The pattern of flickering in each one looked somewhat different.

    But when we sorted them by size, brightness, and color, we began to see intriguing patterns. We were able to determine the orbital speed of each disc – and once you set your clock to run at the disc’s speed, all the flickering patterns started to look the same.

    This universal behavior is indeed predicted by the theory of “magneto-rotational instabilities”.

    That was comforting! It means these mind-boggling maelstroms are “simple” after all.

    And it opens new possibilities. We think the remaining subtle differences between accretion discs occur because we are looking at them from different orientations.

    The next step is to examine these subtle differences more closely and see whether they hold clues to discern a black hole’s orientation. Eventually, our future measurements of black holes could be even more accurate.

    Nature Astronomy 2022
    PASA 2022
    PASA 2018
    See the above science papers for instructive material with images.
    Reviews of Modern Physics 1998

    See the full article here .

    Comments are invited and will be appreciated, especially if the reader finds any errors which I can correct. Use “Reply”.

    five-ways-keep-your-child-safe-school-shootings

    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.

    Stem Education Coalition

    The Conversation (AU) launched as a pilot project in October 2014. It is an independent source of news and views from the academic and research community, delivered direct to the public.
    Our team of professional editors work with university and research institute experts to unlock their knowledge for use by the wider public.
    Access to independent, high quality, authenticated, explanatory journalism underpins a functioning democracy. Our aim is to promote better understanding of current affairs and complex issues. And hopefully allow for a better quality of public discourse and conversation.

     
  • richardmitnick 7:23 am on February 3, 2023 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: " 'Hot Jupiter' Is in a Possible Death Spiral", , Astronomy, , , , , , , ,   

    From Princeton University And From The Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics Via “Eos” : ” ‘Hot Jupiter’ Is in a Possible Death Spiral” 

    Princeton University

    From Princeton University

    And

    From The Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics

    Via

    Eos news bloc

    “Eos”

    AT

    AGU

    1.31.23
    Damond Benningfield

    1
    Kepler-1658b is spiraling closer to its star in this artist’s rendering. Credit: Gabriel Perez Diaz/Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias.

    A distant planet is in a death spiral and is poised to be engulfed by its parent star.

    Kepler-1658b is the first inspiraling planet discovered around an “evolved” star—one that has moved out of its prime life. The star—Kepler-1658—is about 1.5 times the mass of our Sun and has expanded to almost 3 times the Sun’s diameter in its late stages of life, earning it the designation of subgiant.

    Should Kepler-1658b maintain its current path, it will meet its fate in about 2.5 million years.

    As the complicated discovery of the planet and its star has shown, however, nothing is certain. “It’s a very confounding system,” said Ashley Chontos, a postdoctoral fellow at Princeton University and a member of the team that discovered the planet’s shrinking orbit.

    Kepler-1658b was the first exoplanet discovered by the Kepler space telescope, which found thousands of bodies over its lifetime using the transit technique. The telescope measured tiny dips in a star’s brightness when a planet crossed in front of it.

    2
    Kepler stares into a galaxy filled with its exoplanet discoveries in this illustration commissioned for the space telescope’s retirement. Credit: NASA.

    Early in its mission, Kepler recorded such dips from Kepler-1658. However, astronomers had initially cataloged the star as belonging to the main sequence—stars like the Sun that are still burning the hydrogen in their cores. Researchers expected the star to be much smaller than it is, so the initial transit signals “didn’t make sense,” said Shreyas Vissapragada, a postdoctoral researcher at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics and lead author of the new study [The Astrophysical Journal Letters (below)]. The transit indicated a planet roughly the size of Neptune, our solar system’s third-largest planet. However, the system also produced a secondary eclipse as the planet passed behind the star. At Kepler 1658’s distance, a Neptune-sized planet wouldn’t be bright enough to see, so there would be no evidence of the secondary eclipse.

    Kepler-1658b was discarded as a false positive and forgotten about.

    That is, until Chontos began looking at vibrations on the surfaces of stars in the Kepler catalog. Because the telescope kept a constant eye on the stars in its field of view, recording brightness levels every half hour or less, it detected “jiggles” caused by sound waves reverberating through the stars. Piecing together the vibrations—a technique known as asteroseismology—revealed details about the stars’ interiors.

    In the case of Kepler-1658, they showed that the star was much farther along in life than expected and hence about 3 times bigger. That meant the transiting planet was 3 times larger as well, making it big enough and bright enough to contribute to the system’s overall brightness when it wasn’t eclipsed by the star. “Suddenly, a close-in hot Jupiter made sense,” Chontos said. “That discovery [The Astronomical Journal (below)] was completely accidental.”

    A hot Jupiter is a massive planet comparable to Jupiter—the giant of our own solar system—that orbits so close to its star that it is extremely hot. In this case, Kepler-1658b is about the size of Jupiter, but with almost 6 times its mass. “Even the combined masses of all the planets in [our] solar system don’t add up to that,” Chontos said. The planet orbits its star once every 3.85 Earth days, compared with an 88-day period for Mercury, the Sun’s closest planet.

    Changing a Planetary Clock

    Kepler observed the system for about 4 years, so it obtained a pretty good, but not perfect, measurement of the orbital period. It appeared to show that Kepler-1658b followed a steady path around the star.

    At the same time Chontos was studying the system’s vibrations, though, Vissapragada was conducting his own observations. One night, in fact, he and Chontos bumped into each other during runs at the 200-inch Hale Telescope at Palomar Observatory, where both were looking at the system.

    Vissapragada obtained data from two Hale sessions plus three monthlong sets of observations by the Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite (TESS), a space telescope designed to discover and study exoplanets.

    When combined with the earlier Kepler data, the data provided a 13-year baseline of observations.

    “They showed that the clock had changed—the transits were happening measurably earlier than they were predicted to occur,” Vissapragada said. Kepler-1658b’s orbital period was decreasing by 131 milliseconds per year (plus or minus about 20 milliseconds), suggesting the planet will spiral into the star in about 2.5 million years.

    The shrinking orbit is probably the result of tidal effects. “We think we know the total energy in the system,” Chontos said. “The planet is depositing energy in the star, causing it to rotate faster and the planet’s orbit to shrink.” A small amount of the system’s total energy could be dissipated in the planet as well, explaining some minor oddities in its orbit, Vissapragada added.

    Ruling Out the Alternatives

    An inspiral isn’t the only possible explanation for the apparent change in orbital period, however. The timing could appear to change if the system were moving toward us, for example. By measuring the system’s radial velocity—its motion toward or away from us—the team ruled out that possibility.

    It also ruled out the possibility that we see only part of the orbit’s precession period—a “wobble” in the orbit. “We think we’ve ruled out all other probable causes,” said Vissapragada.

    “The evidence for inspiraling planets is plausible, and this paper presents good arguments for this being the case for this planet,” said Girish Duvvuri, a graduate research assistant at the University of Colorado-Boulder who has studied the demise of exoplanets but was not involved in this project. “While I can’t say they’ve exhausted all alternative hypotheses, they covered everything I can think of.”

    Even so, no one can say the fate of Kepler-1658b is sealed. The process of orbital evolution for planets around evolving stars is poorly understood, so several outcomes are possible.

    “The whole dissipation process is very complicated,” Chontos said. “It involves the obliquity, eccentricity, distance—all these different aspects of the orbit that can change over time. While it’s going inward now, there’s nothing to say that the orbit won’t circularize and its migration will stop—just halt. At some point, the planet might even migrate outward. But right now, that’s all just speculation.”

    The astronomers hope to narrow down the possibilities with additional observations of the system by TESS and other ground- and space-based telescopes. And they said that finding similar systems will help as well.

    “We need to look at more of these systems to pin down exactly how that evolution works,” Vissapragada said. “TESS should give us a lot more examples over the next decade, so we’ll have a fairly large sample to see if this mechanism is common.”

    The Astrophysical Journal Letters 2022
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    The Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics combines the resources and research facilities of the Harvard College Observatory and the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory under a single director to pursue studies of those basic physical processes that determine the nature and evolution of the universe. The Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory is a bureau of the Smithsonian Institution, founded in 1890. The Harvard College Observatory, founded in 1839, is a research institution of the Faculty of Arts and Sciences, Harvard University, and provides facilities and substantial other support for teaching activities of the Department of Astronomy.

    Founded in 1973 and headquartered in Cambridge, Massachusetts, the CfA leads a broad program of research in astronomy, astrophysics, Earth and space sciences, as well as science education. The CfA either leads or participates in the development and operations of more than fifteen ground- and space-based astronomical research observatories across the electromagnetic spectrum, including the forthcoming Giant Magellan Telescope(CL) and the Chandra X-ray Observatory, one of NASA’s Great Observatories.

    GMT Giant Magellan Telescope(CL) 21 meters, to be at the Carnegie Institution for Science’s NSF NOIRLab NOAO Las Campanas Observatory(CL) some 115 km (71 mi) north-northeast of La Serena, Chile, over 2,500 m (8,200 ft) high.

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration Chandra X-ray telescope.

    Hosting more than 850 scientists, engineers, and support staff, the CfA is among the largest astronomical research institutes in the world. Its projects have included Nobel Prize-winning advances in cosmology and high energy astrophysics, the discovery of many exoplanets, and the first image of a black hole. The CfA also serves a major role in the global astrophysics research community: the CfA’s Astrophysics Data System, for example, has been universally adopted as the world’s online database of astronomy and physics papers. Known for most of its history as the “Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics”, the CfA rebranded in 2018 to its current name in an effort to reflect its unique status as a joint collaboration between Harvard University and the Smithsonian Institution. The CfA’s current Director (since 2004) is Charles R. Alcock, who succeeds Irwin I. Shapiro (Director from 1982 to 2004) and George B. Field (Director from 1973 to 1982).

    The Center for Astrophysics | Harvard & Smithsonian is not formally an independent legal organization, but rather an institutional entity operated under a Memorandum of Understanding between Harvard University and the Smithsonian Institution. This collaboration was formalized on July 1, 1973, with the goal of coordinating the related research activities of the Harvard College Observatory (HCO) and the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory (SAO) under the leadership of a single Director, and housed within the same complex of buildings on the Harvard campus in Cambridge, Massachusetts. The CfA’s history is therefore also that of the two fully independent organizations that comprise it. With a combined lifetime of more than 300 years, HCO and SAO have been host to major milestones in astronomical history that predate the CfA’s founding.

    History of the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory (SAO)

    Samuel Pierpont Langley, the third Secretary of the Smithsonian, founded the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory on the south yard of the Smithsonian Castle (on the U.S. National Mall) on March 1,1890. The Astrophysical Observatory’s initial, primary purpose was to “record the amount and character of the Sun’s heat”. Charles Greeley Abbot was named SAO’s first director, and the observatory operated solar telescopes to take daily measurements of the Sun’s intensity in different regions of the optical electromagnetic spectrum. In doing so, the observatory enabled Abbot to make critical refinements to the Solar constant, as well as to serendipitously discover Solar variability. It is likely that SAO’s early history as a solar observatory was part of the inspiration behind the Smithsonian’s “sunburst” logo, designed in 1965 by Crimilda Pontes.

    In 1955, the scientific headquarters of SAO moved from Washington, D.C. to Cambridge, Massachusetts to affiliate with the Harvard College Observatory (HCO). Fred Lawrence Whipple, then the chairman of the Harvard Astronomy Department, was named the new director of SAO. The collaborative relationship between SAO and HCO therefore predates the official creation of the CfA by 18 years. SAO’s move to Harvard’s campus also resulted in a rapid expansion of its research program. Following the launch of Sputnik (the world’s first human-made satellite) in 1957, SAO accepted a national challenge to create a worldwide satellite-tracking network, collaborating with the United States Air Force on Project Space Track.

    With the creation of National Aeronautics and Space Administration the following year and throughout the space race, SAO led major efforts in the development of orbiting observatories and large ground-based telescopes, laboratory and theoretical astrophysics, as well as the application of computers to astrophysical problems.

    History of Harvard College Observatory (HCO)

    Partly in response to renewed public interest in astronomy following the 1835 return of Halley’s Comet, the Harvard College Observatory was founded in 1839, when the Harvard Corporation appointed William Cranch Bond as an “Astronomical Observer to the University”. For its first four years of operation, the observatory was situated at the Dana-Palmer House (where Bond also resided) near Harvard Yard, and consisted of little more than three small telescopes and an astronomical clock. In his 1840 book recounting the history of the college, then Harvard President Josiah Quincy III noted that “…there is wanted a reflecting telescope equatorially mounted…”. This telescope, the 15-inch “Great Refractor”, opened seven years later (in 1847) at the top of Observatory Hill in Cambridge (where it still exists today, housed in the oldest of the CfA’s complex of buildings). The telescope was the largest in the United States from 1847 until 1867. William Bond and pioneer photographer John Adams Whipple used the Great Refractor to produce the first clear Daguerrotypes of the Moon (winning them an award at the 1851 Great Exhibition in London). Bond and his son, George Phillips Bond (the second Director of HCO), used it to discover Saturn’s 8th moon, Hyperion (which was also independently discovered by William Lassell).

    Under the directorship of Edward Charles Pickering from 1877 to 1919, the observatory became the world’s major producer of stellar spectra and magnitudes, established an observing station in Peru, and applied mass-production methods to the analysis of data. It was during this time that HCO became host to a series of major discoveries in astronomical history, powered by the Observatory’s so-called “Computers” (women hired by Pickering as skilled workers to process astronomical data). These “Computers” included Williamina Fleming; Annie Jump Cannon; Henrietta Swan Leavitt; Florence Cushman; and Antonia Maury, all widely recognized today as major figures in scientific history. Henrietta Swan Leavitt, for example, discovered the so-called period-luminosity relation for Classical Cepheid variable stars, establishing the first major “standard candle” with which to measure the distance to galaxies. Now called “Leavitt’s Law”, the discovery is regarded as one of the most foundational and important in the history of astronomy; astronomers like Edwin Hubble, for example, would later use Leavitt’s Law to establish that the Universe is expanding, the primary piece of evidence for the Big Bang model.

    Upon Pickering’s retirement in 1921, the Directorship of HCO fell to Harlow Shapley (a major participant in the so-called “Great Debate” of 1920). This era of the observatory was made famous by the work of Cecelia Payne-Gaposchkin, who became the first woman to earn a Ph.D. in astronomy from Radcliffe College (a short walk from the Observatory). Payne-Gapochkin’s 1925 thesis proposed that stars were composed primarily of hydrogen and helium, an idea thought ridiculous at the time. Between Shapley’s tenure and the formation of the CfA, the observatory was directed by Donald H. Menzel and then Leo Goldberg, both of whom maintained widely recognized programs in solar and stellar astrophysics. Menzel played a major role in encouraging the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory to move to Cambridge and collaborate more closely with HCO.

    Joint history as the Center for Astrophysics (CfA)

    The collaborative foundation for what would ultimately give rise to the Center for Astrophysics began with SAO’s move to Cambridge in 1955. Fred Whipple, who was already chair of the Harvard Astronomy Department (housed within HCO since 1931), was named SAO’s new director at the start of this new era; an early test of the model for a unified Directorship across HCO and SAO. The following 18 years would see the two independent entities merge ever closer together, operating effectively (but informally) as one large research center.

    This joint relationship was formalized as the new Harvard–Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics on July 1, 1973. George B. Field, then affiliated with University of California- Berkeley, was appointed as its first Director. That same year, a new astronomical journal, the CfA Preprint Series was created, and a CfA/SAO instrument flying aboard Skylab discovered coronal holes on the Sun. The founding of the CfA also coincided with the birth of X-ray astronomy as a new, major field that was largely dominated by CfA scientists in its early years. Riccardo Giacconi, regarded as the “father of X-ray astronomy”, founded the High Energy Astrophysics Division within the new CfA by moving most of his research group (then at American Sciences and Engineering) to SAO in 1973. That group would later go on to launch the Einstein Observatory (the first imaging X-ray telescope) in 1976, and ultimately lead the proposals and development of what would become the Chandra X-ray Observatory. Chandra, the second of NASA’s Great Observatories and still the most powerful X-ray telescope in history, continues operations today as part of the CfA’s Chandra X-ray Center. Giacconi would later win the 2002 Nobel Prize in Physics for his foundational work in X-ray astronomy.

    Shortly after the launch of the Einstein Observatory, the CfA’s Steven Weinberg won the 1979 Nobel Prize in Physics for his work on electroweak unification. The following decade saw the start of the landmark CfA Redshift Survey (the first attempt to map the large scale structure of the Universe), as well as the release of the Field Report, a highly influential Astronomy & Astrophysics Decadal Survey chaired by the outgoing CfA Director George Field. He would be replaced in 1982 by Irwin Shapiro, who during his tenure as Director (1982 to 2004) oversaw the expansion of the CfA’s observing facilities around the world.

    Harvard Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics Fred Lawrence Whipple Observatory located near Amado, Arizona on the slopes of Mount Hopkins, Altitude 2,606 m (8,550 ft)

    European Space Agency [La Agencia Espacial Europea] [Agence spatiale européenne] [Europäische Weltraumorganization] (EU)/National Aeronautics and Space Administration SOHO satellite. Launched in 1995.

    National Aeronautics Space Agency NASA Kepler Space Telescope

    CfA-led discoveries throughout this period include canonical work on Supernova 1987A, the “CfA2 Great Wall” (then the largest known coherent structure in the Universe), the best-yet evidence for supermassive black holes, and the first convincing evidence for an extrasolar planet.

    The 1990s also saw the CfA unwittingly play a major role in the history of computer science and the internet: in 1990, SAO developed SAOImage, one of the world’s first X11-based applications made publicly available (its successor, DS9, remains the most widely used astronomical FITS image viewer worldwide). During this time, scientists at the CfA also began work on what would become the Astrophysics Data System (ADS), one of the world’s first online databases of research papers. By 1993, the ADS was running the first routine transatlantic queries between databases, a foundational aspect of the internet today.

    The CfA Today

    Research at the CfA

    Charles Alcock, known for a number of major works related to massive compact halo objects, was named the third director of the CfA in 2004. Today Alcock overseas one of the largest and most productive astronomical institutes in the world, with more than 850 staff and an annual budget in excess of $100M. The Harvard Department of Astronomy, housed within the CfA, maintains a continual complement of approximately 60 Ph.D. students, more than 100 postdoctoral researchers, and roughly 25 undergraduate majors in astronomy and astrophysics from Harvard College. SAO, meanwhile, hosts a long-running and highly rated REU Summer Intern program as well as many visiting graduate students. The CfA estimates that roughly 10% of the professional astrophysics community in the United States spent at least a portion of their career or education there.

    The CfA is either a lead or major partner in the operations of the Fred Lawrence Whipple Observatory, the Submillimeter Array, MMT Observatory, the South Pole Telescope, VERITAS, and a number of other smaller ground-based telescopes. The CfA’s 2019-2024 Strategic Plan includes the construction of the Giant Magellan Telescope as a driving priority for the Center.

    CFA Harvard Smithsonian Submillimeter Array on Mauna Kea, Hawai’i, Altitude 4,205 m (13,796 ft).

    South Pole Telescope SPTPOL. The SPT collaboration is made up of over a dozen (mostly North American) institutions, including The University of Chicago ; The University of California-Berkeley ; Case Western Reserve University; Harvard/Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory; The University of Colorado- Boulder; McGill (CA) University, The University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign; The University of California- Davis; Ludwig Maximilians Universität München(DE); DOE’s Argonne National Laboratory; and The National Institute for Standards and Technology.

    Along with the Chandra X-ray Observatory, the CfA plays a central role in a number of space-based observing facilities, including the recently launched Parker Solar Probe, Kepler Space Telescope, the Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO), and HINODE. The CfA, via the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory, recently played a major role in the Lynx X-ray Observatory, a NASA-Funded Large Mission Concept Study commissioned as part of the 2020 Decadal Survey on Astronomy and Astrophysics (“Astro2020”). If launched, Lynx would be the most powerful X-ray observatory constructed to date, enabling order-of-magnitude advances in capability over Chandra.

    NASA Parker Solar Probe Plus named to honor Pioneering Physicist Eugene Parker. The Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Lab.

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration Solar Dynamics Observatory.

    Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) (国立研究開発法人宇宙航空研究開発機構] (JP)/National Aeronautics and Space Administration HINODE spacecraft.

    SAO is one of the 13 stakeholder institutes for the Event Horizon Telescope Board, and the CfA hosts its Array Operations Center. In 2019, the project revealed the first direct image of a black hole.

    Messier 87*, The first image of the event horizon of a black hole. This is the supermassive black hole at the center of the galaxy Messier 87. Image via The Event Horizon Telescope Collaboration released on 10 April 2019 via National Science Foundation.

    The result is widely regarded as a triumph not only of observational radio astronomy, but of its intersection with theoretical astrophysics. Union of the observational and theoretical subfields of astrophysics has been a major focus of the CfA since its founding.

    In 2018, the CfA rebranded, changing its official name to the “Center for Astrophysics | Harvard & Smithsonian” in an effort to reflect its unique status as a joint collaboration between Harvard University and the Smithsonian Institution. Today, the CfA receives roughly 70% of its funding from NASA, 22% from Smithsonian federal funds, and 4% from the National Science Foundation. The remaining 4% comes from contributors including the United States Department of Energy, the Annenberg Foundation, as well as other gifts and endowments.

    About Princeton: Overview

    Princeton University is a private Ivy League research university in Princeton, New Jersey (US). Founded in 1746 in Elizabeth as the College of New Jersey, Princeton is the fourth-oldest institution of higher education in the United States and one of the nine colonial colleges chartered before the American Revolution. The institution moved to Newark in 1747, then to the current site nine years later. It was renamed Princeton University in 1896.

    Princeton provides undergraduate and graduate instruction in the humanities, social sciences, natural sciences, and engineering. It offers professional degrees through the Princeton School of Public and International Affairs, the School of Engineering and Applied Science, the School of Architecture and the Bendheim Center for Finance. The university also manages the DOE’s Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory. Princeton has the largest endowment per student in the United States.

    As of October 2020, 69 Nobel laureates, 15 Fields Medalists and 14 Turing Award laureates have been affiliated with Princeton University as alumni, faculty members or researchers. In addition, Princeton has been associated with 21 National Medal of Science winners, 5 Abel Prize winners, 5 National Humanities Medal recipients, 215 Rhodes Scholars, 139 Gates Cambridge Scholars and 137 Marshall Scholars. Two U.S. Presidents, twelve U.S. Supreme Court Justices (three of whom currently serve on the court) and numerous living billionaires and foreign heads of state are all counted among Princeton’s alumni body. Princeton has also graduated many prominent members of the U.S. Congress and the U.S. Cabinet, including eight Secretaries of State, three Secretaries of Defense and the current Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

    Princeton University, founded as the College of New Jersey, was considered the successor of the “Log College” founded by the Reverend William Tennent at Neshaminy, PA in about 1726. New Light Presbyterians founded the College of New Jersey in 1746 in Elizabeth, New Jersey. Its purpose was to train ministers. The college was the educational and religious capital of Scottish Presbyterian America. Unlike Harvard University , which was originally “intensely English” with graduates taking the side of the crown during the American Revolution, Princeton was founded to meet the religious needs of the period and many of its graduates took the American side in the war. In 1754, trustees of the College of New Jersey suggested that, in recognition of Governor Jonathan Belcher’s interest, Princeton should be named as Belcher College. Belcher replied: “What a name that would be!” In 1756, the college moved its campus to Princeton, New Jersey. Its home in Princeton was Nassau Hall, named for the royal House of Orange-Nassau of William III of England.

    Following the untimely deaths of Princeton’s first five presidents, John Witherspoon became president in 1768 and remained in that post until his death in 1794. During his presidency, Witherspoon shifted the college’s focus from training ministers to preparing a new generation for secular leadership in the new American nation. To this end, he tightened academic standards and solicited investment in the college. Witherspoon’s presidency constituted a long period of stability for the college, interrupted by the American Revolution and particularly the Battle of Princeton, during which British soldiers briefly occupied Nassau Hall; American forces, led by George Washington, fired cannon on the building to rout them from it.

    In 1812, the eighth president of the College of New Jersey, Ashbel Green (1812–23), helped establish the Princeton Theological Seminary next door. The plan to extend the theological curriculum met with “enthusiastic approval on the part of the authorities at the College of New Jersey.” Today, Princeton University and Princeton Theological Seminary maintain separate institutions with ties that include services such as cross-registration and mutual library access.

    Before the construction of Stanhope Hall in 1803, Nassau Hall was the college’s sole building. The cornerstone of the building was laid on September 17, 1754. During the summer of 1783, the Continental Congress met in Nassau Hall, making Princeton the country’s capital for four months. Over the centuries and through two redesigns following major fires (1802 and 1855), Nassau Hall’s role shifted from an all-purpose building, comprising office, dormitory, library, and classroom space; to classroom space exclusively; to its present role as the administrative center of the University. The class of 1879 donated twin lion sculptures that flanked the entrance until 1911, when that same class replaced them with tigers. Nassau Hall’s bell rang after the hall’s construction; however, the fire of 1802 melted it. The bell was then recast and melted again in the fire of 1855.

    James McCosh became the college’s president in 1868 and lifted the institution out of a low period that had been brought about by the American Civil War. During his two decades of service, he overhauled the curriculum, oversaw an expansion of inquiry into the sciences, and supervised the addition of a number of buildings in the High Victorian Gothic style to the campus. McCosh Hall is named in his honor.

    In 1879, the first thesis for a Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) was submitted by James F. Williamson, Class of 1877.

    In 1896, the college officially changed its name from the College of New Jersey to Princeton University to honor the town in which it resides. During this year, the college also underwent large expansion and officially became a university. In 1900, the Graduate School was established.

    In 1902, Woodrow Wilson, graduate of the Class of 1879, was elected the 13th president of the university. Under Wilson, Princeton introduced the preceptorial system in 1905, a then-unique concept in the United States that augmented the standard lecture method of teaching with a more personal form in which small groups of students, or precepts, could interact with a single instructor, or preceptor, in their field of interest.

    In 1906, the reservoir Carnegie Lake was created by Andrew Carnegie. A collection of historical photographs of the building of the lake is housed at the Seeley G. Mudd Manuscript Library on Princeton’s campus. On October 2, 1913, the Princeton University Graduate College was dedicated. In 1919 the School of Architecture was established. In 1933, Albert Einstein became a lifetime member of the Institute for Advanced Study with an office on the Princeton campus. While always independent of the university, the Institute for Advanced Study occupied offices in Jones Hall for 6 years, from its opening in 1933, until its own campus was finished and opened in 1939.

    Coeducation

    In 1969, Princeton University first admitted women as undergraduates. In 1887, the university actually maintained and staffed a sister college, Evelyn College for Women, in the town of Princeton on Evelyn and Nassau streets. It was closed after roughly a decade of operation. After abortive discussions with Sarah Lawrence College to relocate the women’s college to Princeton and merge it with the University in 1967, the administration decided to admit women and turned to the issue of transforming the school’s operations and facilities into a female-friendly campus. The administration had barely finished these plans in April 1969 when the admissions office began mailing out its acceptance letters. Its five-year coeducation plan provided $7.8 million for the development of new facilities that would eventually house and educate 650 women students at Princeton by 1974. Ultimately, 148 women, consisting of 100 freshmen and transfer students of other years, entered Princeton on September 6, 1969 amidst much media attention. Princeton enrolled its first female graduate student, Sabra Follett Meservey, as a PhD candidate in Turkish history in 1961. A handful of undergraduate women had studied at Princeton from 1963 on, spending their junior year there to study “critical languages” in which Princeton’s offerings surpassed those of their home institutions. They were considered regular students for their year on campus, but were not candidates for a Princeton degree.

    As a result of a 1979 lawsuit by Sally Frank, Princeton’s eating clubs were required to go coeducational in 1991, after Tiger Inn’s appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court was denied. In 1987, the university changed the gendered lyrics of “Old Nassau” to reflect the school’s co-educational student body. From 2009 to 2011, Princeton professor Nannerl O. Keohane chaired a committee on undergraduate women’s leadership at the university, appointed by President Shirley M. Tilghman.

    The main campus sits on about 500 acres (2.0 km^2) in Princeton. In 2011, the main campus was named by Travel+Leisure as one of the most beautiful in the United States. The James Forrestal Campus is split between nearby Plainsboro and South Brunswick. The University also owns some property in West Windsor Township. The campuses are situated about one hour from both New York City and Philadelphia.

    The first building on campus was Nassau Hall, completed in 1756 and situated on the northern edge of campus facing Nassau Street. The campus expanded steadily around Nassau Hall during the early and middle 19th century. The McCosh presidency (1868–88) saw the construction of a number of buildings in the High Victorian Gothic and Romanesque Revival styles; many of them are now gone, leaving the remaining few to appear out of place. At the end of the 19th century much of Princeton’s architecture was designed by the Cope and Stewardson firm (same architects who designed a large part of Washington University in St Louis and University of Pennsylvania) resulting in the Collegiate Gothic style for which it is known today. Implemented initially by William Appleton Potter and later enforced by the University’s supervising architect, Ralph Adams Cram, the Collegiate Gothic style remained the standard for all new building on the Princeton campus through 1960. A flurry of construction in the 1960s produced a number of new buildings on the south side of the main campus, many of which have been poorly received. Several prominent architects have contributed some more recent additions, including Frank Gehry (Lewis Library), I. M. Pei (Spelman Halls), Demetri Porphyrios (Whitman College, a Collegiate Gothic project), Robert Venturi and Denise Scott Brown (Frist Campus Center, among several others), and Rafael Viñoly (Carl Icahn Laboratory).

    A group of 20th-century sculptures scattered throughout the campus forms the Putnam Collection of Sculpture. It includes works by Alexander Calder (Five Disks: One Empty), Jacob Epstein (Albert Einstein), Henry Moore (Oval with Points), Isamu Noguchi (White Sun), and Pablo Picasso (Head of a Woman). Richard Serra’s The Hedgehog and The Fox is located between Peyton and Fine halls next to Princeton Stadium and the Lewis Library.

    At the southern edge of the campus is Carnegie Lake, an artificial lake named for Andrew Carnegie. Carnegie financed the lake’s construction in 1906 at the behest of a friend who was a Princeton alumnus. Carnegie hoped the opportunity to take up rowing would inspire Princeton students to forsake football, which he considered “not gentlemanly.” The Shea Rowing Center on the lake’s shore continues to serve as the headquarters for Princeton rowing.

    Cannon Green

    Buried in the ground at the center of the lawn south of Nassau Hall is the “Big Cannon,” which was left in Princeton by British troops as they fled following the Battle of Princeton. It remained in Princeton until the War of 1812, when it was taken to New Brunswick. In 1836 the cannon was returned to Princeton and placed at the eastern end of town. It was removed to the campus under cover of night by Princeton students in 1838 and buried in its current location in 1840.

    A second “Little Cannon” is buried in the lawn in front of nearby Whig Hall. This cannon, which may also have been captured in the Battle of Princeton, was stolen by students of Rutgers University in 1875. The theft ignited the Rutgers-Princeton Cannon War. A compromise between the presidents of Princeton and Rutgers ended the war and forced the return of the Little Cannon to Princeton. The protruding cannons are occasionally painted scarlet by Rutgers students who continue the traditional dispute.

    In years when the Princeton football team beats the teams of both Harvard University and Yale University in the same season, Princeton celebrates with a bonfire on Cannon Green. This occurred in 2012, ending a five-year drought. The next bonfire happened on November 24, 2013, and was broadcast live over the Internet.

    Landscape

    Princeton’s grounds were designed by Beatrix Farrand between 1912 and 1943. Her contributions were most recently recognized with the naming of a courtyard for her. Subsequent changes to the landscape were introduced by Quennell Rothschild & Partners in 2000. In 2005, Michael Van Valkenburgh was hired as the new consulting landscape architect for the campus. Lynden B. Miller was invited to work with him as Princeton’s consulting gardening architect, focusing on the 17 gardens that are distributed throughout the campus.

    Buildings

    Nassau Hall

    Nassau Hall is the oldest building on campus. Begun in 1754 and completed in 1756, it was the first seat of the New Jersey Legislature in 1776, was involved in the battle of Princeton in 1777, and was the seat of the Congress of the Confederation (and thus capitol of the United States) from June 30, 1783, to November 4, 1783. It now houses the office of the university president and other administrative offices, and remains the symbolic center of the campus. The front entrance is flanked by two bronze tigers, a gift of the Princeton Class of 1879. Commencement is held on the front lawn of Nassau Hall in good weather. In 1966, Nassau Hall was added to the National Register of Historic Places.

    Residential colleges

    Princeton has six undergraduate residential colleges, each housing approximately 500 freshmen, sophomores, some juniors and seniors, and a handful of junior and senior resident advisers. Each college consists of a set of dormitories, a dining hall, a variety of other amenities—such as study spaces, libraries, performance spaces, and darkrooms—and a collection of administrators and associated faculty. Two colleges, First College and Forbes College (formerly Woodrow Wilson College and Princeton Inn College, respectively), date to the 1970s; three others, Rockefeller, Mathey, and Butler Colleges, were created in 1983 following the Committee on Undergraduate Residential Life (CURL) report, which suggested the institution of residential colleges as a solution to an allegedly fragmented campus social life. The construction of Whitman College, the university’s sixth residential college, was completed in 2007.

    Rockefeller and Mathey are located in the northwest corner of the campus; Princeton brochures often feature their Collegiate Gothic architecture. Like most of Princeton’s Gothic buildings, they predate the residential college system and were fashioned into colleges from individual dormitories.

    First and Butler, located south of the center of the campus, were built in the 1960s. First served as an early experiment in the establishment of the residential college system. Butler, like Rockefeller and Mathey, consisted of a collection of ordinary dorms (called the “New New Quad”) before the addition of a dining hall made it a residential college. Widely disliked for their edgy modernist design, including “waffle ceilings,” the dormitories on the Butler Quad were demolished in 2007. Butler is now reopened as a four-year residential college, housing both under- and upperclassmen.

    Forbes is located on the site of the historic Princeton Inn, a gracious hotel overlooking the Princeton golf course. The Princeton Inn, originally constructed in 1924, played regular host to important symposia and gatherings of renowned scholars from both the university and the nearby Institute for Advanced Study for many years. Forbes currently houses nearly 500 undergraduates in its residential halls.

    In 2003, Princeton broke ground for a sixth college named Whitman College after its principal sponsor, Meg Whitman, who graduated from Princeton in 1977. The new dormitories were constructed in the Collegiate Gothic architectural style and were designed by architect Demetri Porphyrios. Construction finished in 2007, and Whitman College was inaugurated as Princeton’s sixth residential college that same year.

    The precursor of the present college system in America was originally proposed by university president Woodrow Wilson in the early 20th century. For over 800 years, however, the collegiate system had already existed in Britain at University of Cambridge (UK) and University of Oxford (UK). Wilson’s model was much closer to Yale University’s present system, which features four-year colleges. Lacking the support of the trustees, the plan languished until 1968. That year, Wilson College was established to cap a series of alternatives to the eating clubs. Fierce debates raged before the present residential college system emerged. The plan was first attempted at Yale, but the administration was initially uninterested; an exasperated alumnus, Edward Harkness, finally paid to have the college system implemented at Harvard in the 1920s, leading to the oft-quoted aphorism that the college system is a Princeton idea that was executed at Harvard with funding from Yale.

    Princeton has one graduate residential college, known simply as the Graduate College, located beyond Forbes College at the outskirts of campus. The far-flung location of the GC was the spoil of a squabble between Woodrow Wilson and then-Graduate School Dean Andrew Fleming West. Wilson preferred a central location for the college; West wanted the graduate students as far as possible from the campus. Ultimately, West prevailed. The Graduate College is composed of a large Collegiate Gothic section crowned by Cleveland Tower, a local landmark that also houses a world-class carillon. The attached New Graduate College provides a modern contrast in architectural style.

    McCarter Theatre

    The Tony-award-winning McCarter Theatre was built by the Princeton Triangle Club, a student performance group, using club profits and a gift from Princeton University alumnus Thomas McCarter. Today, the Triangle Club performs its annual freshmen revue, fall show, and Reunions performances in McCarter. McCarter is also recognized as one of the leading regional theaters in the United States.

    Art Museum

    The Princeton University Art Museum was established in 1882 to give students direct, intimate, and sustained access to original works of art that complement and enrich instruction and research at the university. This continues to be a primary function, along with serving as a community resource and a destination for national and international visitors.

    Numbering over 92,000 objects, the collections range from ancient to contemporary art and concentrate geographically on the Mediterranean regions, Western Europe, China, the United States, and Latin America. There is a collection of Greek and Roman antiquities, including ceramics, marbles, bronzes, and Roman mosaics from faculty excavations in Antioch. Medieval Europe is represented by sculpture, metalwork, and stained glass. The collection of Western European paintings includes examples from the early Renaissance through the 19th century, with masterpieces by Monet, Cézanne, and Van Gogh, and features a growing collection of 20th-century and contemporary art, including iconic paintings such as Andy Warhol’s Blue Marilyn.

    One of the best features of the museums is its collection of Chinese art, with important holdings in bronzes, tomb figurines, painting, and calligraphy. Its collection of pre-Columbian art includes examples of Mayan art, and is commonly considered to be the most important collection of pre-Columbian art outside of Latin America. The museum has collections of old master prints and drawings and a comprehensive collection of over 27,000 original photographs. African art and Northwest Coast Indian art are also represented. The Museum also oversees the outdoor Putnam Collection of Sculpture.

    University Chapel

    The Princeton University Chapel is located on the north side of campus, near Nassau Street. It was built between 1924 and 1928, at a cost of $2.3 million [approximately $34.2 million in 2020 dollars]. Ralph Adams Cram, the University’s supervising architect, designed the chapel, which he viewed as the crown jewel for the Collegiate Gothic motif he had championed for the campus. At the time of its construction, it was the second largest university chapel in the world, after King’s College Chapel, Cambridge. It underwent a two-year, $10 million restoration campaign between 2000 and 2002.

    Measured on the exterior, the chapel is 277 feet (84 m) long, 76 feet (23 m) wide at its transepts, and 121 feet (37 m) high. The exterior is Pennsylvania sandstone, with Indiana limestone used for the trim. The interior is mostly limestone and Aquia Creek sandstone. The design evokes an English church of the Middle Ages. The extensive iconography, in stained glass, stonework, and wood carvings, has the common theme of connecting religion and scholarship.

    The Chapel seats almost 2,000. It hosts weekly ecumenical Christian services, daily Roman Catholic mass, and several annual special events.

    Murray-Dodge Hall

    Murray-Dodge Hall houses the Office of Religious Life (ORL), the Murray Dodge Theater, the Murray-Dodge Café, the Muslim Prayer Room and the Interfaith Prayer Room. The ORL houses the office of the Dean of Religious Life, Alison Boden, and a number of university chaplains, including the country’s first Hindu chaplain, Vineet Chander; and one of the country’s first Muslim chaplains, Sohaib Sultan.

    Sustainability

    Published in 2008, Princeton’s Sustainability Plan highlights three priority areas for the University’s Office of Sustainability: reduction of greenhouse gas emissions; conservation of resources; and research, education, and civic engagement. Princeton has committed to reducing its carbon dioxide emissions to 1990 levels by 2020: Energy without the purchase of offsets. The University published its first Sustainability Progress Report in November 2009. The University has adopted a green purchasing policy and recycling program that focuses on paper products, construction materials, lightbulbs, furniture, and electronics. Its dining halls have set a goal to purchase 75% sustainable food products by 2015. The student organization “Greening Princeton” seeks to encourage the University administration to adopt environmentally friendly policies on campus.

    Organization

    The Trustees of Princeton University, a 40-member board, is responsible for the overall direction of the University. It approves the operating and capital budgets, supervises the investment of the University’s endowment and oversees campus real estate and long-range physical planning. The trustees also exercise prior review and approval concerning changes in major policies, such as those in instructional programs and admission, as well as tuition and fees and the hiring of faculty members.

    With an endowment of $26.1 billion, Princeton University is among the wealthiest universities in the world. Ranked in 2010 as the third largest endowment in the United States, the university had the greatest per-student endowment in the world (over $2 million for undergraduates) in 2011. Such a significant endowment is sustained through the continued donations of its alumni and is maintained by investment advisers. Some of Princeton’s wealth is invested in its art museum, which features works by Claude Monet, Vincent van Gogh, Jackson Pollock, and Andy Warhol among other prominent artists.

    Academics

    Undergraduates fulfill general education requirements, choose among a wide variety of elective courses, and pursue departmental concentrations and interdisciplinary certificate programs. Required independent work is a hallmark of undergraduate education at Princeton. Students graduate with either the Bachelor of Arts (A.B.) or the Bachelor of Science in Engineering (B.S.E.).

    The graduate school offers advanced degrees spanning the humanities, social sciences, natural sciences, and engineering. Doctoral education is available in most disciplines. It emphasizes original and independent scholarship whereas master’s degree programs in architecture, engineering, finance, and public affairs and public policy prepare candidates for careers in public life and professional practice.

    The university has ties with the Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton Theological Seminary and the Westminster Choir College of Rider University .

    Undergraduate

    Undergraduate courses in the humanities are traditionally either seminars or lectures held 2 or 3 times a week with an additional discussion seminar that is called a “precept.” To graduate, all A.B. candidates must complete a senior thesis and, in most departments, one or two extensive pieces of independent research that are known as “junior papers.” Juniors in some departments, including architecture and the creative arts, complete independent projects that differ from written research papers. A.B. candidates must also fulfill a three or four semester foreign language requirement and distribution requirements (which include, for example, classes in ethics, literature and the arts, and historical analysis) with a total of 31 classes. B.S.E. candidates follow a parallel track with an emphasis on a rigorous science and math curriculum, a computer science requirement, and at least two semesters of independent research including an optional senior thesis. All B.S.E. students must complete at least 36 classes. A.B. candidates typically have more freedom in course selection than B.S.E. candidates because of the fewer number of required classes. Nonetheless, in the spirit of a liberal arts education, both enjoy a comparatively high degree of latitude in creating a self-structured curriculum.

    Undergraduates agree to adhere to an academic integrity policy called the Honor Code, established in 1893. Under the Honor Code, faculty do not proctor examinations; instead, the students proctor one another and must report any suspected violation to an Honor Committee made up of undergraduates. The Committee investigates reported violations and holds a hearing if it is warranted. An acquittal at such a hearing results in the destruction of all records of the hearing; a conviction results in the student’s suspension or expulsion. The signed pledge required by the Honor Code is so integral to students’ academic experience that the Princeton Triangle Club performs a song about it each fall. Out-of-class exercises fall under the jurisdiction of the Faculty-Student Committee on Discipline. Undergraduates are expected to sign a pledge on their written work affirming that they have not plagiarized the work.

    Graduate

    The Graduate School has about 2,600 students in 42 academic departments and programs in social sciences; engineering; natural sciences; and humanities. These departments include the Department of Psychology; Department of History; and Department of Economics.

    In 2017–2018, it received nearly 11,000 applications for admission and accepted around 1,000 applicants. The University also awarded 319 Ph.D. degrees and 170 final master’s degrees. Princeton has no medical school, law school, business school, or school of education. (A short-lived Princeton Law School folded in 1852.) It offers professional graduate degrees in architecture; engineering; finance and public policy- the last through the Princeton School of Public and International Affairs founded in 1930 as the School of Public and International Affairs and renamed in 1948 after university president (and U.S. president) Woodrow Wilson, and most recently renamed in 2020.

    Libraries

    The Princeton University Library system houses over eleven million holdings including seven million bound volumes. The main university library, Firestone Library, which houses almost four million volumes, is one of the largest university libraries in the world. Additionally, it is among the largest “open stack” libraries in existence. Its collections include the autographed manuscript of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby and George F. Kennan’s Long Telegram. In addition to Firestone library, specialized libraries exist for architecture, art and archaeology, East Asian studies, engineering, music, public and international affairs, public policy and university archives, and the sciences. In an effort to expand access, these libraries also subscribe to thousands of electronic resources.

    Institutes

    High Meadows Environmental Institute

    The High Meadows Environmental Institute is an “interdisciplinary center of environmental research, education, and outreach” at the university. The institute was started in 1994. About 90 faculty members at Princeton University are affiliated with it.

    The High Meadows Environmental Institute has the following research centers:

    Carbon Mitigation Initiative (CMI): This is a 15-year-long partnership between PEI and British Petroleum with the goal of finding solutions to problems related to climate change. The Stabilization Wedge Game has been created as part of this initiative.
    Center for BioComplexity (CBC)
    Cooperative Institute for Climate Science (CICS): This is a collaboration with the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration’s Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory.
    Energy Systems Analysis Group
    Grand Challenges

    Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory

    The DOE’s Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory was founded in 1951 as Project Matterhorn, a top-secret cold war project aimed at achieving controlled nuclear fusion. Princeton astrophysics professor Lyman Spitzer became the first director of the project and remained director until the lab’s declassification in 1961 when it received its current name.
    PPPL currently houses approximately half of the graduate astrophysics department, the Princeton Program in Plasma Physics. The lab is also home to the Harold P. Furth Plasma Physics Library. The library contains all declassified Project Matterhorn documents, included the first design sketch of a stellarator by Lyman Spitzer.

    Princeton is one of five US universities to have and to operate a Department of Energy national laboratory.

    Student life and culture

    University housing is guaranteed to all undergraduates for all four years. More than 98% of students live on campus in dormitories. Freshmen and sophomores must live in residential colleges, while juniors and seniors typically live in designated upperclassman dormitories. The actual dormitories are comparable, but only residential colleges have dining halls. Nonetheless, any undergraduate may purchase a meal plan and eat in a residential college dining hall. Recently, upperclassmen have been given the option of remaining in their college for all four years. Juniors and seniors also have the option of living off-campus, but high rent in the Princeton area encourages almost all students to live in university housing. Undergraduate social life revolves around the residential colleges and a number of coeducational eating clubs, which students may choose to join in the spring of their sophomore year. Eating clubs, which are not officially affiliated with the university, serve as dining halls and communal spaces for their members and also host social events throughout the academic year.

    Princeton’s six residential colleges host a variety of social events and activities, guest speakers, and trips. The residential colleges also sponsor trips to New York for undergraduates to see ballets, operas, Broadway shows, sports events, and other activities. The eating clubs, located on Prospect Avenue, are co-ed organizations for upperclassmen. Most upperclassmen eat their meals at one of the eleven eating clubs. Additionally, the clubs serve as evening and weekend social venues for members and guests. The eleven clubs are Cannon; Cap and Gown; Charter; Cloister; Colonial; Cottage; Ivy; Quadrangle; Terrace; Tiger; and Tower.

    Princeton hosts two Model United Nations conferences, PMUNC in the fall for high school students and PDI in the spring for college students. It also hosts the Princeton Invitational Speech and Debate tournament each year at the end of November. Princeton also runs Princeton Model Congress, an event that is held once a year in mid-November. The four-day conference has high school students from around the country as participants.

    Although the school’s admissions policy is need-blind, Princeton, based on the proportion of students who receive Pell Grants, was ranked as a school with little economic diversity among all national universities ranked by U.S. News & World Report. While Pell figures are widely used as a gauge of the number of low-income undergraduates on a given campus, the rankings article cautions “the proportion of students on Pell Grants isn’t a perfect measure of an institution’s efforts to achieve economic diversity,” but goes on to say that “still, many experts say that Pell figures are the best available gauge of how many low-income undergrads there are on a given campus.”

    TigerTrends is a university-based student run fashion, arts, and lifestyle magazine.

    Demographics

    Princeton has made significant progress in expanding the diversity of its student body in recent years. The 2019 freshman class was one of the most diverse in the school’s history, with 61% of students identifying as students of color. Undergraduate and master’s students were 51% male and 49% female for the 2018–19 academic year.

    The median family income of Princeton students is $186,100, with 57% of students coming from the top 10% highest-earning families and 14% from the bottom 60%.

    In 1999, 10% of the student body was Jewish, a percentage lower than those at other Ivy League schools. Sixteen percent of the student body was Jewish in 1985; the number decreased by 40% from 1985 to 1999. This decline prompted The Daily Princetonian to write a series of articles on the decline and its reasons. Caroline C. Pam of The New York Observer wrote that Princeton was “long dogged by a reputation for anti-Semitism” and that this history as well as Princeton’s elite status caused the university and its community to feel sensitivity towards the decrease of Jewish students. At the time many Jewish students at Princeton dated Jewish students at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia because they perceived Princeton as an environment where it was difficult to find romantic prospects; Pam stated that there was a theory that the dating issues were a cause of the decline in Jewish students.

    In 1981, the population of African Americans at Princeton University made up less than 10%. Bruce M. Wright was admitted into the university in 1936 as the first African American, however, his admission was a mistake and when he got to campus he was asked to leave. Three years later Wright asked the dean for an explanation on his dismissal and the dean suggested to him that “a member of your race might feel very much alone” at Princeton University.

    Traditions

    Princeton enjoys a wide variety of campus traditions, some of which, like the Clapper Theft and Nude Olympics, have faded into history:

    Arch Sings – Late-night concerts that feature one or several of Princeton’s undergraduate a cappella groups, such as the Princeton Nassoons; Princeton Tigertones; Princeton Footnotes; Princeton Roaring 20; and The Princeton Wildcats. The free concerts take place in one of the larger arches on campus. Most are held in Blair Arch or Class of 1879 Arch.

    Bonfire – Ceremonial bonfire that takes place in Cannon Green behind Nassau Hall. It is held only if Princeton beats both Harvard University and Yale University at football in the same season. The most recent bonfire was lighted on November 18, 2018.

    Bicker – Selection process for new members that is employed by selective eating clubs. Prospective members, or bickerees, are required to perform a variety of activities at the request of current members.

    Cane Spree – An athletic competition between freshmen and sophomores that is held in the fall. The event centers on cane wrestling, where a freshman and a sophomore will grapple for control of a cane. This commemorates a time in the 1870s when sophomores, angry with the freshmen who strutted around with fancy canes, stole all of the canes from the freshmen, hitting them with their own canes in the process.

    The Clapper or Clapper Theft – The act of climbing to the top of Nassau Hall to steal the bell clapper, which rings to signal the start of classes on the first day of the school year. For safety reasons, the clapper has been removed permanently.

    Class Jackets (Beer Jackets) – Each graduating class designs a Class Jacket that features its class year. The artwork is almost invariably dominated by the school colors and tiger motifs.

    Communiversity – An annual street fair with performances, arts and crafts, and other activities that attempts to foster interaction between the university community and the residents of Princeton.

    Dean’s Date – The Tuesday at the end of each semester when all written work is due. This day signals the end of reading period and the beginning of final examinations. Traditionally, undergraduates gather outside McCosh Hall before the 5:00 PM deadline to cheer on fellow students who have left their work to the very last minute.

    FitzRandolph Gates – At the end of Princeton’s graduation ceremony, the new graduates process out through the main gate of the university as a symbol of the fact that they are leaving college. According to tradition, anyone who exits campus through the FitzRandolph Gates before his or her own graduation date will not graduate.

    Holder Howl – The midnight before Dean’s Date, students from Holder Hall and elsewhere gather in the Holder courtyard and take part in a minute-long, communal primal scream to vent frustration from studying with impromptu, late night noise making.

    Houseparties – Formal parties that are held simultaneously by all of the eating clubs at the end of the spring term.

    Ivy stones – Class memorial stones placed on the exterior walls of academic buildings around the campus.

    Lawnparties – Parties that feature live bands that are held simultaneously by all of the eating clubs at the start of classes and at the conclusion of the academic year.

    Princeton Locomotive – Traditional cheer in use since the 1890s. It is commonly heard at Opening Exercises in the fall as alumni and current students welcome the freshman class, as well as the P-rade in the spring at Princeton Reunions. The cheer starts slowly and picks up speed, and includes the sounds heard at a fireworks show.

    Hip! Hip!
    Rah, Rah, Rah,
    Tiger, Tiger, Tiger,
    Sis, Sis, Sis,
    Boom, Boom, Boom, Ah!
    Princeton! Princeton! Princeton!

    Or if a class is being celebrated, the last line consists of the class year repeated three times, e.g. “Eighty-eight! Eighty-eight! Eighty-eight!”

    Newman’s Day – Students attempt to drink 24 beers in the 24 hours of April 24. According to The New York Times, “the day got its name from an apocryphal quote attributed to Paul Newman: ’24 beers in a case, 24 hours in a day. Coincidence? I think not.'” Newman had spoken out against the tradition, however.

    Nude Olympics – Annual nude and partially nude frolic in Holder Courtyard that takes place during the first snow of the winter. Started in the early 1970s, the Nude Olympics went co-educational in 1979 and gained much notoriety with the American press. For safety reasons, the administration banned the Olympics in 2000 to the chagrin of students.

    Prospect 11 – The act of drinking a beer at all 11 eating clubs in a single night.

    P-rade – Traditional parade of alumni and their families. They process through campus by class year during Reunions.

    Reunions – Massive annual gathering of alumni held the weekend before graduation.

    Athletics

    Princeton supports organized athletics at three levels: varsity intercollegiate, club intercollegiate, and intramural. It also provides “a variety of physical education and recreational programs” for members of the Princeton community. According to the athletics program’s mission statement, Princeton aims for its students who participate in athletics to be “‘student athletes’ in the fullest sense of the phrase. Most undergraduates participate in athletics at some level.

    Princeton’s colors are orange and black. The school’s athletes are known as Tigers, and the mascot is a tiger. The Princeton administration considered naming the mascot in 2007, but the effort was dropped in the face of alumni opposition.

    Varsity

    Princeton is an NCAA Division I school. Its athletic conference is the Ivy League. Princeton hosts 38 men’s and women’s varsity sports. The largest varsity sport is rowing, with almost 150 athletes.

    Princeton’s football team has a long and storied history. Princeton played against Rutgers University in the first intercollegiate football game in the U.S. on Nov 6, 1869. By a score of 6–4, Rutgers won the game, which was played by rules similar to modern rugby. Today Princeton is a member of the Football Championship Subdivision of NCAA Division I. As of the end of the 2010 season, Princeton had won 26 national football championships, more than any other school.

    Club and intramural

    In addition to varsity sports, Princeton hosts about 35 club sports teams. Princeton’s rugby team is organized as a club sport. Princeton’s sailing team is also a club sport, though it competes at the varsity level in the MAISA conference of the Inter-Collegiate Sailing Association.

    Each year, nearly 300 teams participate in intramural sports at Princeton. Intramurals are open to members of Princeton’s faculty, staff, and students, though a team representing a residential college or eating club must consist only of members of that college or club. Several leagues with differing levels of competitiveness are available.

    Songs

    Notable among a number of songs commonly played and sung at various events such as commencement, convocation, and athletic games is Princeton Cannon Song, the Princeton University fight song.

    Bob Dylan wrote Day of The Locusts (for his 1970 album New Morning) about his experience of receiving an honorary doctorate from the University. It is a reference to the negative experience he had and it mentions the Brood X cicada infestation Princeton experienced that June 1970.

    “Old Nassau”

    Old Nassau has been Princeton University’s anthem since 1859. Its words were written that year by a freshman, Harlan Page Peck, and published in the March issue of the Nassau Literary Review (the oldest student publication at Princeton and also the second oldest undergraduate literary magazine in the country). The words and music appeared together for the first time in Songs of Old Nassau, published in April 1859. Before the Langlotz tune was written, the song was sung to Auld Lang Syne’s melody, which also fits.

    However, Old Nassau does not only refer to the university’s anthem. It can also refer to Nassau Hall, the building that was built in 1756 and named after William III of the House of Orange-Nassau. When built, it was the largest college building in North America. It served briefly as the capitol of the United States when the Continental Congress convened there in the summer of 1783. By metonymy, the term can refer to the university as a whole. Finally, it can also refer to a chemical reaction that is dubbed “Old Nassau reaction” because the solution turns orange and then black.
    Princeton Shield

    “Eos” is the leading source for trustworthy news and perspectives about the Earth and space sciences and their impact. Its namesake is Eos, the Greek goddess of the dawn, who represents the light shed on understanding our planet and its environment in space by the Earth and space sciences.

     
  • richardmitnick 10:11 pm on February 2, 2023 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "Astronomers identify 20 ultraviolet-emitting supernova remnants in the Andromeda Galaxy", , , Astronomy, , , , The University of Calgary (CA)   

    From The University of Calgary (CA) Via “phys.org” : “Astronomers identify 20 ultraviolet-emitting supernova remnants in the Andromeda Galaxy” 

    From The University of Calgary (CA)

    Via

    “phys.org”

    2.2.23

    1
    Positions of the 20 SNRs with detected diffuse UV emission (red squares) and of the 5 SNRs with likely, but confused, diffuse emission (blue squares), overlaid on the image of the Andromeda Galaxy in the F148W filter. Credit: Leahy et al, 2023.

    Using the AstroSat satellite, astronomers from the University of Calgary, Canada, have identified 20 supernova remnants (SNRs) in the Andromeda Galaxy, which exhibit diffuse ultraviolet emission.

    The finding, presented in a research paper [below] published January 25 , could help us better understand the origin and properties of ultraviolet emission in SNRs.

    SNRs are diffuse, expanding structures resulting from a supernova explosion. They contain ejected material expanding from the explosion and other interstellar material that has been swept up by the passage of the shockwave from the exploded star.

    Studies of supernova remnants are important for astronomers, as they play a key role in the evolution of galaxies, dispersing the heavy elements made in the supernova explosion and providing the energy needed for heating up the interstellar medium. SNRs are also believed to be responsible for the acceleration of galactic cosmic rays.

    Although many extragalactic SNRs have been detected to date, the ones showcasing ultraviolet (UV) emission are difficult to find, mainly due to the strong interstellar extinction for our galaxy in the UV. What is noteworthy, despite the recent progress in UV-based SNR research, is that there does not yet exist a catalog of extragalactic UV-emitting SNRs.

    That is why a team of astronomers led by Denis Leahy decided to conduct a search for UV-emitting SNRs in the nearby Andromeda Galaxy (also known as Messier 31, or M31), with the aim of generating the first catalog of such objects in another galaxy. For this purpose they employed AstroSat’s Ultraviolet Imaging Telescope (UVIT).

    “UV images of M31 were obtained by the Ultraviolet Imaging Telescope on the AstroSat satellite, and the list of SNRs was obtained from X-ray, optical and radio catalogs of SNRs in M31. We used the UVIT images to find SNRs with diffuse emission, omitting those too contaminated with stellar emission,” the researchers wrote in the paper.

    The team initially selected 177 SNRs in order to investigate whether or not they showcase diffuse ultraviolet emission. Out of the whole sample, 20 supernova remnants turned out to be UV emitters. The identified sources exhibit diffuse emission which is not associated with stars, although the strength of the diffuse emission varies.

    The astronomers compared the band luminosities of these 20 SNRs to the band luminosities of seven previously known UV-emitting SNRs in the Milky Way, Large Magellanic Cloud (LMC) and Small Magellanic Cloud (SMC). In result, they found similar spectral shapes between the known SNRs and the SNRs in the Andromeda Galaxy. The finding suggests that the UV emission from the supernova remnants reported in the paper is dominated by line emission and that this emission is associated with the SNRs.

    The authors of the study propose spectroscopic observations to confirm the line nature of the UV emission from the newly identified SNRs. However, they noted that it will be difficult to perform spectroscopy for the typically crowded regions in the Andromeda Galaxy where these SNRs are located.

    research paper

    See the full article here.

    Comments are invited and will be appreciated, especially if the reader finds any errors which I can correct. Use “Reply”.

    five-ways-keep-your-child-safe-school-shootings

    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.

    Stem Education Coalition

    The University of Calgary (CA) is a public research university located in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. The University of Calgary started in 1944 as the Calgary branch of the University of Alberta (CA), founded in 1908, prior to being instituted into a separate, autonomous university in 1966. It is composed of 14 faculties and over 85 research institutes and centres. The main campus is located in the northwest quadrant of the city near the Bow River and a smaller south campus is located in the city centre. The main campus houses most of the research facilities and works with provincial and federal research and regulatory agencies, several of which are housed next to the campus such as the Geological Survey of Canada. The main campus covers approximately 200 hectares (490 acres).

    A member of the U15, the University of Calgary is also one of Canada’s top research universities (based on the number of Canada Research Chairs). The university has a sponsored research revenue of $380.4 million, with total revenues exceeding $1.2 billion. The university maintains close ties to the petroleum and geoscience industry through the Department of Geosciences and the Schulich School of Engineering. The university also maintains several other departments and faculties, including the Cumming School of Medicine, the Faculty of Arts, the School of Public Policy, the Faculty of Law, and the Haskayne School of Business.

    Notable former students include Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper, Java computer language inventor James Gosling, Uber co-founder Garrett Camp, astronaut Robert Thirsk, and Lululemon Athletica founder Chip Wilson. The university has produced over 170,000 alumni who reside in 152 countries.

    The university offers 250 programs in post-secondary education awarding bachelors, masters, and doctorate (PhD) degrees. The University of Calgary has developed a wide range of undergraduate and graduate programs. The campus has an area of 200 hectares (490 acres) and hosts 14 faculties, 55 departments and 85 research institutes and centres (see Canadian university scientific research organizations).

    The university is accredited through Alberta’s Post-Secondary Learning Act and is considered a “comprehensive academic and research university” (CARU). CARUs offer a range of academic and professional programs, which generally lead to undergraduate and graduate level credentials, and have a strong research focus.

    The University of Calgary’s faculties are:

    Cumming School of Medicine
    Faculty of Arts
    School of Architecture, Planning and Landscape (SAPL)
    Faculty of Graduate Studies
    Faculty of Kinesiology
    Faculty of Law
    Faculty of Nursing
    Faculty of Science
    Faculty of Social Work
    Faculty of Veterinary Medicine
    Haskayne School of Business
    Schulich School of Engineering
    Werklund School of Education

    The University of Calgary has ranked in a number of post-secondary rankings. In the 2022 Academic Ranking of World Universities rankings, the university ranked 151–200 in the world and 7–8 in Canada. The 2023 QS World University Rankings ranked the university 242nd in the world, and tenth in Canada. The 2023 Times Higher Education World University Rankings ranked the university 201–250 in the world, and 8–10 in Canada. In the 2022–23 U.S. News & World Report Best Global University Ranking, the university ranked 175th in the world, and seventh in Canada. Maclean’s placed Calgary ninth in its 2023 Canadian medical-doctoral universities rankings. The university was ranked in spite of having opted out — along with several other universities in Canada — of participating in Maclean’s graduate survey since 2006.

    The university’s research performance has been noted in several bibliometric university rankings, which uses citation analysis to evaluates the impact a university has on academic publications. In 2019, the Performance Ranking of Scientific Papers for World Universities ranked the university 132nd in the world, and seventh in Canada. The University Ranking by Academic Performance 2018–19 rankings placed the university 139th in the world, and seventh in Canada.

    Along with academic and research-based rankings, the university has also been ranked by publications that evaluate the employment prospects of its graduates. In QS’s 2022 graduate employability ranking, the university ranked 131–140 in the world, and seventh in Canada.
    ===
    Newspaper

    The university has two main newspapers, UToday, and The Gauntlet. UToday is the online source for news about the University of Calgary, published by the department of University Relations in collaboration with the university’s 14 faculties. Created in September 2008, UToday reports on research discoveries at the university, major events and milestones, campus happenings and personalities, and opportunities to get involved in learning or activities. It is published every weekday throughout the year. UToday’s readers include students, faculty, staff, alumni, news media, donors, community leaders and partners, and residents at large.

    The Gauntlet is the University of Calgary’s monthly magazine publication, covering the campus and the Calgary community. First published in 1960 as a weekly student newspaper before its transition into a monthly magazine in 2017, it is primarily focused towards undergraduates.

    The university also prints Libin Life, which is published by the Libin Cardiovascular Institute of Alberta.

    Radio

    CJSW is the university’s campus radio station, broadcasting at 90.9 MHz FM. CJSW is a member of the National Campus and Community Radio Association and the University of Calgary Tri-Media Alliance in partnership with NUTV (the campus television station) and The Gauntlet (the campus newspaper). CJSW is a non-profit society maintained and operated by a group of four staff members and over 200 volunteers drawn from both the University of Calgary student body and the wider city of Calgary population. CJSW broadcasts music, spoken word and multicultural programming.

    In addition to the FM broadcast, the station can be heard at 106.9 MHz cable FM, and via Ogg Vorbis stream from its web site. Select shows are also available for podcast download.

    Television

    NUTV is one of the oldest university-based television production societies in Canada. Established in 1983 and incorporated in 1991, NUTV is a campus-based non-profit organization. NUTV offers the opportunity to University of Calgary students and community members to explore the medium of television by learning the various stages of production. This includes reporting/interviewing; hosting; writing; camera operation; lighting; sound mixing; Final Cut Pro & Adobe Creative Suite editing; producing; and directing. NUTV is part of the University of Calgary Tri-Media Alliance, comprising print The Gauntlet, radio CJSW 90.9, and television (NUTV). The University of Calgary is unique in that it is the only Canadian university that houses three media operations on-campus.

    Book publishing

    The University of Calgary Press was founded in 1981 and to date has published over 400 titles. Special emphasis is placed on three areas: works concerning the geographic regions spanning the Canadian Northwest and the American West; innovative and experimental works that challenge the established canons, subjects and formats, with special interest in art and architecture; and internationally focused manuscripts with particular attention to Latin America, World Heritage Sites, international relations and public policy.

     
  • richardmitnick 11:45 pm on February 1, 2023 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , "The bubbling universe - A previously unknown phase transition in the early universe", Astronomy, , , , , The University of Southern Denmark[Syddansk Universitet](DK)   

    From The University of Southern Denmark[Syddansk Universitet](DK) [[lit. ”South Danish University”] Via “phys.org” : “The bubbling universe – A previously unknown phase transition in the early universe” 

    From The University of Southern Denmark[Syddansk Universitet](DK) [[lit. ”South Danish University”]

    Via

    “phys.org”

    2.1.23

    1
    AI generated illustration of colliding bubbles in early universe. Credit: Birgitte Svennevig, University of Southern Denmark.

    Think of bringing a pot of water to the boil: As the temperature reaches the boiling point, bubbles form in the water, burst and evaporate as the water boils. This continues until there is no more water changing phase from liquid to steam.

    This is roughly the idea of what happened in the very early universe, right after the Big Bang, 13.7 billion years ago.

    The idea comes from particle physicists Martin S. Sloth from the Center for Cosmology and Particle Physics Phenomenology at University of Southern Denmark and Florian Niedermann from the Nordic Institute for Theoretical Physics (NORDITA) in Stockholm. Niedermann is a previous postdoc in Sloth’s research group. In this new scientific article, they present an even stronger basis for their idea.

    Many bubbles crashing into each other

    “One must imagine that bubbles arose in various places in the early universe. They got bigger and they started crashing into each other. In the end, there was a complicated state of colliding bubbles, which released energy and eventually evaporated,” said Martin S. Sloth.

    The background for their theory of phase changes in a bubbling universe is a highly interesting problem with calculating the so-called Hubble constant; a value for how fast the universe is expanding. Sloth and Niedermann believe that the bubbling universe plays a role here.

    The Hubble constant can be calculated very reliably by, for example, analyzing cosmic background radiation or by measuring how fast a galaxy or an exploding star is moving away from us. According to Sloth and Niedermann, both methods are not only reliable, but also scientifically recognized. The problem is that the two methods do not lead to the same Hubble constant. Physicists call this problem “the Hubble tension.”

    Is there something wrong with our picture of the early universe?

    “In science, you have to be able to reach the same result by using different methods, so here we have a problem. Why don’t we get the same result when we are so confident about both methods?” said Florian Niedermann.

    Sloth and Niedermann believe they have found a way to get the same Hubble constant, regardless of which method is used. The path starts with a phase transition and a bubbling universe—and thus an early, bubbling universe is connected to “the Hubble tension.” “If we assume that these methods are reliable—and we think they are—then maybe the methods are not the problem. Maybe we need to look at the starting point, the basis, that we apply the methods to. Maybe this basis is wrong.”

    2
    AI generated illustration of colliding bubbles in the universe. Credit: Birgitte Svennevig, University of Southern Denmark.

    An unknown dark energy

    The basis for the methods is the so-called Standard Model, which assumes that there was a lot of radiation and matter, both normal and dark, in the early universe, and that these were the dominant forms of energy. The radiation and the normal matter were compressed in a dark, hot and dense plasma; the state of the universe in the first 380.000 years after Big Bang.

    The Universe according to the Standard Model © lower left edge.

    When you base your calculations on the Standard Model, you arrive at different results for how fast the universe is expanding—and thus different Hubble constants.

    But maybe a new form of dark energy was at play in the early universe? Sloth and Niedermann think so.

    If you introduce the idea that a new form of dark energy in the early universe suddenly began to bubble and undergo a phase transition, the calculations agree. In their model, Sloth and Niedermann arrive at the same Hubble constant when using both measurement methods. They call this idea New Early Dark Energy—NEDE.

    Change from one phase to another—like water to steam

    Sloth and Niedermann believe that this new, dark energy underwent a phase transition when the universe expanded, shortly before it changed from the dense and hot plasma state to the universe we know today.

    “This means that the dark energy in the early universe underwent a phase transition, just as water can change phase between frozen, liquid and steam. In the process, the energy bubbles eventually collided with other bubbles and along the way released energy,” said Niedermann.

    “It could have lasted anything from an insanely short time—perhaps just the time it takes two particles to collide—to 300,000 years. We don’t know, but that is something we are working to find out,” added Sloth.

    Do we need new physics?

    So, the phase transition model is based on the fact that the universe does not behave as the Standard Model tells us. It may sound a little scientifically crazy to suggest that something is wrong with our fundamental understanding of the universe; that you can just propose the existence of hitherto unknown forces or particles to solve the Hubble tension.

    “But if we trust the observations and calculations, we must accept that our current model of the universe cannot explain the data, and then we must improve the model. Not by discarding it and its success so far, but by elaborating on it and making it more detailed so that it can explain the new and better data,” said Martin S. Sloth, adding, “It appears that a phase transition in the dark energy is the missing element in the current Standard Model to explain the differing measurements of the universe’s expansion rate.”

    The findings are published in the journal Physics Letters B.
    https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S037026932200689X

    See the full article here.

    Comments are invited and will be appreciated, especially if the reader finds any errors which I can correct. Use “Reply”.

    five-ways-keep-your-child-safe-school-shootings

    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.

    Stem Education Coalition

    The University of Southern Denmark [Syddansk Universitet](DK) [lit. ”South Danish University”[Syddansk Universitet], abbr. SDU] is a university in Denmark that has campuses located in Southern Denmark and on Zealand.

    The university offers a number of joint programmes in co-operation with The University of Flensburg [Europa-Universität Flensburg] (DE) and the Christian-Albrecht University of Kiel [Christian-Albrechts-Universität zu Kiel](DE). Contacts with regional industries and the international scientific community are strong.

    With its 29,674 enrolled students (as of 2016), the university is both the third-largest and, given its roots in Odense University, the third-oldest Danish university (fourth if one includes The Technical University of Denmark [Danmarks Tekniske Universitet](DK)). Since the introduction of the ranking systems in 2012, the University of Southern Denmark has consistently been ranked as one of the top 50 young universities in the world by both the Times Higher Education World University Rankings of the Top 100 Universities Under 50 and the QS World University Rankings of the Top 50 Universities Under 50.

    The University of Southern Denmark was established in 1998 when Odense University, the Southern Denmark School of Business and Engineering and the South Jutland University Centre were merged. The University Library of Southern Denmark was also merged with the university in 1998. As the original Odense University was established in 1966, the University of Southern Denmark celebrated their 50-year anniversary on September 15, 2016.

    In 2006, the Odense University College of Engineering was merged into the university and renamed as the Faculty of Engineering. After being located in different parts of Odense for several years, a brand new Faculty of Engineering building physically connected to the main Odense Campus was established and opened in 2015. In 2007, the Business School Centre in Slagelse (Handelshøjskolecentret Slagelse) and the National Institute of Public Health (Statens Institut for Folkesundhed) were also merged into the University of Southern Denmark.

    Princess Marie took over the role of the patron of the university in 2009.
    ===
    As a national institution the University of Southern Denmark (SDU) comprises five faculties – Humanities, Science, Engineering, Social Sciences and Health Sciences totaling 32 departments, 11 research centers and a university library. University Library of Southern Denmark is also a part of the university.

    Research activities and student education make up the core activities of the university. The University of Southern Denmark also has widespread cooperation with business and industry in the region and considerable activities within continuing education. The university offers a number of degrees taught in English; examples include European Studies and American Studies.

    The faculty of all six campuses comprises approximately 1,200 researchers in Odense, Kolding, Esbjerg, Sønderborg, Slagelse and Copenhagen; approximately 18,000 students are enrolled. The University of Southern Denmark offers programmes in five different faculties – Humanities, Science, Engineering, Social Sciences, and Health Sciences. It incorporates approximately 35 institutes, 30 research centres, and a well-equipped university library.

    The university offers a wide range of traditional disciplines as well as a broad selection of business and engineering studies. In recent years the number of options available has been considerably expanded. Examples include the introduction of a very successful Journalism programme in Odense, Information Science in Kolding, and a Mechatronics Engineering programme in Sønderborg. The educational environments on the Jutland campuses have also been strengthened through the creation of new programmes such as a bachelor’s degree in Sociology and Cultural Analysis, a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration with Sports Management, a bachelor’s in Public Health Science in Esbjerg, Danish and English Language Studies in Kolding, and a variety of engineering programmes and European Studies in Sønderborg. Moreover, the University of Southern Denmark is the only university in Scandinavia that offers a degree programme in chiropractic studies (Clinical Biomechanics).

    The university focuses on areas such as communication, information technology, and biotechnology. Other areas of research are pursued through a number of national research centres at the university. Examples include The Hans Christian Andersen Center, the Centre for Sound Communication, and the Danish Biotechnology Instrument Centre. Odense in particular focuses on research within the field of geriatrics.

    Co-operation with the business community has resulted in three substantial donations from some of the giants in Danish industry: Odense is the home of the Maersk Mc-Kinney Moller Institute for Production Technology, where robot technology is one of the many research areas. The Mads Clausen Institute in Sønderborg is engaged in the design and development of software for integration in the intelligent products of the future. Thanks to funding from Kompan and Lego, a research environment for the investigation of child behaviour and development has also been established.

    The university is also hosting the Danish Institute for Advanced Study (DIAS), which brings outstanding researchers together in an interdisciplinary centre for fundamental research and intellectual inquiry. The Danish IAS exists to encourage and support curiosity-driven research in the sciences and humanities, and thereby unlock new revolutionary ideas.

     
  • richardmitnick 12:51 pm on February 1, 2023 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "Cornell-led telescope project completion in sight", Astronomy, , , , , Fred Young [Cornell '64] Submillimeter Telescope to be installed at the summit of Cerro Chajnantor in the Atacama Desert of northern Chile Altitude 5612 m (18412 ft)., The College of Arts and Sciences   

    From The College of Arts and Sciences At Cornell University: “Cornell-led telescope project completion in sight” 

    From The College of Arts and Sciences

    At

    Cornell University

    1.31.23
    Linda B. Glaser | Cornell Chronicle

    The construction of the Fred Young [Cornell ’64] Submillimeter Telescope (FYST, pronounced “feast”) being developed by CCAT Observatory Inc., an international consortium of universities led by Cornell, is drawing closer to an end.

    Work is poised to begin on a defining feature of the telescope, the “elevation” part that supports the upper structure and will contain the telescope’s mirrors. Unlike almost any other telescope to date, the part will be constructed from Invar, a special formulation of steel that has an extremely low coefficient of thermal expansion.

    “This means that it doesn’t get bigger when it’s hot and it doesn’t shrink when it’s cold,” said project manager Jim Blair, in the Department of Astronomy in the College of Arts & Sciences. “At least, it’s greatly, greatly reduced with Invar compared to regular steel. And that’s important for the science because at the wavelengths that we are looking at thermal expansion would actually affect the data and could ruin it.”

    Thus, said Blair, despite some similarities to other telescopes, the FYST “will be able to look regularly at frequency ranges very few other telescopes can even detect because of some of these design elements and material choices.”

    The telescope’s mirrors are also cutting-edge technology, said Blair. They’re being built in the Netherlands by Airborne, one of the world’s premier carbon fiber companies.

    “Like the Invar we’re using for the elevation structure, the mirrors are the secret sauce to being able to do our science,” he said. “Physicists have known how to measure in the submillimeter frequency ranges that the FYST is targeting for a long time, but before now nobody’s been able to build a telescope to do it – at least not at an affordable price. The carbon fiber structures that are supporting our mirrors are absolutely state of the art.”

    The internal steel skeletal structures for yoke arms A and B, which will hold the three-story tall elevation part in place, are almost complete; once the elevation part is finished, all these massive sections will be mounted on top of the already completed lower portions, and the telescope will be nearly assembled. The project team estimates that by the end of 2023 they will begin to test the telescope in Germany.

    Fred Young ’64, MEng ’66, MBA ’66, after whom the telescope is named in appreciation for his generous support of the project, recently visited the construction site. “Seeing the beginning of the construction of the telescope in Germany was enormously satisfying as the culmination of many years of planning and preparation,” he said. “What was particularly striking was the enormous size of the rotating azimuth base which is the first element to be completed. The rapid and precisely controlled movement facilitated by large electric motors was an impressive demonstration of its ability to scan the sky. We clearly have much to look forward to now.”

    3
    Trenchwork Underway.

    The proximity of the trial assembly site at Wessel GmbH in Xanten, Germany to the University of Cologne, a CCAT-prime partner, permits quick site visits and interaction with staff at Vertex Antennentechnik GmbH of Duisburg, Germany, the company designing the telescope.

    “This allows us to have close cooperation with the constructor and follow in detail the finer points of the telescope development right down to the power socket locations,” said Ronan Higgins, CCAT-prime deputy project engineer at the University of Cologne. “I have travelled back and forth over the roads of the region following subassemblies from different suppliers. You appreciate what a massive effort it is to bring this telescope together and how many unseen people work in the background to bring all this together.”

    Because of the extreme altitude of the FYST summit site on Cerro Chajnantor located in the Andes mountains of Chile – it will be the second highest telescope in the world, the highest being only fifty meters beyond it at the summit of the mountain — the entire telescope is being constructed and pre-assembled in Germany, and will be disassembled into about 12 major sections and transported to Chile for reassembly.

    “We’ll take it apart in major sections, ship it to Chile and put it together, kind of like a Lego project,” said project manager Jim Blair. “And then we have a lot less work to do up at extreme altitude in Chile.”

    Shipping the telescope to Chile is anticipated in 2024, but that will be a major undertaking, said Blair. The transport will be orchestrated by Vertex and is expected to take four months or longer.

    “The logistics of moving such big parts are not at all simple; it’s a major, major movement,” said Blair.

    In Chile, major work has been accomplished in recent months by Chilean contractor Consorcio FVV Ingeniería y Construcción Limitada. The nine kilometer trench running from the base camp where the observatory’s power generation system will be located to the mountain summit, carrying the main power cable and fiber optic cable for data, is complete. The project required first digging the trench, putting in a sand bed, laying the two cables plus a grounding cable, backfilling with sand, covering it with tiles and then danger utility tape – and then burying the entire nine kilometers. Cable access points (manholes) also had to be installed every 500 meters.

    Work at the telescope site, at 18,400 feet, is complicated by the extreme altitude. Workers have to be trained and pass an exam to be registered to work at that height, and can work a maximum of 12-13 days at a time. For each day they work at extreme altitude, they must spend a day below 9,000 feet. The 108-person FYST construction crew is on a conservatively safe schedule of seven days on, seven days off.

    Despite the challenges, they have nearly finished laying the foundation, which Blair said was “tricky to build and is very precisely done.” The concrete goes down about eight feet.

    4
    FYST Pre-cast foundation installed and aligned.

    Because the Atacama Desert is an arid region, the site requires extensive grounding to protect from lightning. The construction crew will be digging a lattice trench in which large amounts of copper cable will be laid to create a grounding system.

    A final project this spring will be a concrete container for an 80,000 liter fuel tank, to ensure that any possible fuel leak will not harm the environment. The containment will be one and half times the size of the fuel tank, explained Blair, so that it won’t overflow in case of snow or rain.

    The main power generators, already procured, and the electronics cabinets, switchgear and transformers will be the last components installed at the base facility before the telescope itself arrives for installation at the summit. This work is projected to start in the third quarter of 2023, with the power system commissioned by early 2024, if not before.

    See the full article here .

    Comments are invited and will be appreciated, especially if the reader finds any errors which I can correct. Use “Reply”.

    five-ways-keep-your-child-safe-school-shootings

    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.

    Stem Education Coalition

    The College of Arts and Sciences is a division of Cornell University. It has been part of the university since its founding, although its name has changed over time. It grants bachelor’s degrees, and masters and doctorates through affiliation with the Cornell University Graduate School. Its major academic buildings are located on the Arts Quad and include some of the university’s oldest buildings. The college offers courses in many fields of study and is the largest college at Cornell by undergraduate enrollment.

    Originally, the university’s faculty was undifferentiated, but with the founding of the Cornell Law School in 1886 and the concomitant self-segregation of the school’s lawyers, different departments and colleges formed.

    Initially, the division that would become the College of Arts and Sciences was known as the Academic Department, but it was formally renamed in 1903. The College endowed the first professorships in American history, musicology, and American literature. Currently, the college teaches 4,100 undergraduates, with 600 full-time faculty members (and an unspecified number of lecturers) teaching 2,200 courses.

    The Arts Quad is the site of Cornell’s original academic buildings and is home to many of the college’s programs. On the western side of the quad, at the top of Libe Slope, are Morrill Hall (completed in 1866), McGraw Hall (1872) and White Hall (1868). These simple but elegant buildings, built with native Cayuga bluestone, reflect Ezra Cornell’s utilitarianism and are known as Stone Row. The statue of Ezra Cornell, dating back to 1919, stands between Morrill and McGraw Halls. Across from this statue, in front of Goldwin Smith Hall, sits the statue of Andrew Dickson White, Cornell’s other co-founder and its first president.

    Lincoln Hall (1888) also stands on the eastern face of the quad next to Goldwin Smith Hall. On the northern face are the domed Sibley Hall and Tjaden Hall (1883). Just off of the quad on the Slope, next to Tjaden, stands the Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art, designed by I. M. Pei. Stimson Hall (1902), Olin Library (1959) and Uris Library (1892), with Cornell’s landmark clocktower, McGraw Tower, stand on the southern end of the quad.

    Olin Library replaced Boardman Hall (1892), the original location of the Cornell Law School. In 1992, an underground addition was made to the quad with Kroch Library, an extension of Olin Library that houses several special collections of the Cornell University Library, including the Division of Rare and Manuscript Collections.

    Klarman Hall, the first new humanities building at Cornell in over 100 years, opened in 2016. Klarman houses the offices of Comparative Literature and Romance Studies. The building is connected to, and surrounded on three sides by, Goldwin Smith Hall and fronts East Avenue.

    Legends and lore about the Arts Quad and its statues can be found at Cornelliana.

    The College of Arts and Sciences offers both undergraduate and graduate (through the Graduate School) degrees. The only undergraduate degree is the Bachelor of Arts. However, students may enroll in the dual-degree program, which allows them to pursue programs of study in two colleges and receive two different degrees. The faculties within the college are:

    Africana Studies and Research Center*
    American Studies
    Anthropology
    Archaeology
    Asian-American Studies
    Asian Studies
    Astronomy/Astrophysics
    Biology (with the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences)
    Biology & Society Major (with the Colleges of Agriculture and Life Sciences and Human Ecology)
    Chemistry and Chemical Biology
    China and Asia-pacific Studies
    Classics
    Cognitive Studies
    College Scholar Program (frees up to 40 selected students in each class from all degree requirements and allows them to fashion a plan of study conducive to achieving their ultimate intellectual goals; a senior thesis is required)
    Comparative Literature
    Computer Science (with the College of Engineering)
    Earth and Atmospheric Sciences (with the Colleges of Agriculture and Life Sciences and Engineering)
    Economics
    English
    Feminist, Gender, and Sexuality Studies
    German Studies
    Government
    History
    History of Art
    Human Biology
    Independent Major
    Information Science (with the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences and College of Engineering)
    Jewish Studies
    John S. Knight Institute for Writing in the Disciplines
    Latin American Studies
    Latino Studies
    Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Studies
    Linguistics
    Mathematics
    Medieval Studies
    Modern European Studies Concentration
    Music
    Near Eastern Studies
    Philosophy
    Physics
    Psychology
    Religious Studies
    Romance Studies
    Russian
    Science and Technology Studies
    Society for the Humanities
    Sociology
    Theatre, Film, and Dance
    Visual Studies Undergraduate Concentration

    *Africana Studies was an independent center reporting directly to the Provost until July 1, 2011.

    Once called “the first American university” by educational historian Frederick Rudolph, Cornell University represents a distinctive mix of eminent scholarship and democratic ideals. Adding practical subjects to the classics and admitting qualified students regardless of nationality, race, social circumstance, gender, or religion was quite a departure when Cornell was founded in 1865.

    Today’s Cornell reflects this heritage of egalitarian excellence. It is home to the nation’s first colleges devoted to hotel administration, industrial and labor relations, and veterinary medicine. Both a private university and the land-grant institution of New York State, Cornell University is the most educationally diverse member of the Ivy League.

    On the Ithaca campus alone nearly 20,000 students representing every state and 120 countries choose from among 4,000 courses in 11 undergraduate, graduate, and professional schools. Many undergraduates participate in a wide range of interdisciplinary programs, play meaningful roles in original research, and study in Cornell programs in Washington, New York City, and the world over.

    Cornell University is a private, statutory, Ivy League and land-grant research university in Ithaca, New York. Founded in 1865 by Ezra Cornell and Andrew Dickson White, the university was intended to teach and make contributions in all fields of knowledge—from the classics to the sciences, and from the theoretical to the applied. These ideals, unconventional for the time, are captured in Cornell’s founding principle, a popular 1868 quotation from founder Ezra Cornell: “I would found an institution where any person can find instruction in any study.”

    The university is broadly organized into seven undergraduate colleges and seven graduate divisions at its main Ithaca campus, with each college and division defining its specific admission standards and academic programs in near autonomy. The university also administers two satellite medical campuses, one in New York City and one in Education City, Qatar, and The Jacobs Technion-Cornell Institute in New York City, a graduate program that incorporates technology, business, and creative thinking. The program moved from Google’s Chelsea Building in New York City to its permanent campus on Roosevelt Island in September 2017.

    Cornell is one of the few private land-grant universities in the United States. Of its seven undergraduate colleges, three are state-supported statutory or contract colleges through The State University of New York (SUNY) system, including its Agricultural and Human Ecology colleges as well as its Industrial Labor Relations school. Of Cornell’s graduate schools, only the veterinary college is state-supported. As a land grant college, Cornell operates a cooperative extension outreach program in every county of New York and receives annual funding from the State of New York for certain educational missions. The Cornell University Ithaca Campus comprises 745 acres, but is much larger when the Cornell Botanic Gardens (more than 4,300 acres) and the numerous university-owned lands in New York City are considered.

    Alumni and affiliates of Cornell have reached many notable and influential positions in politics, media, and science. As of January 2021, 61 Nobel laureates, four Turing Award winners and one Fields Medalist have been affiliated with Cornell. Cornell counts more than 250,000 living alumni, and its former and present faculty and alumni include 34 Marshall Scholars, 33 Rhodes Scholars, 29 Truman Scholars, 7 Gates Scholars, 55 Olympic Medalists, 10 current Fortune 500 CEOs, and 35 billionaire alumni. Since its founding, Cornell has been a co-educational, non-sectarian institution where admission has not been restricted by religion or race. The student body consists of more than 15,000 undergraduate and 9,000 graduate students from all 50 American states and 119 countries.

    History

    Cornell University was founded on April 27, 1865; the New York State (NYS) Senate authorized the university as the state’s land grant institution. Senator Ezra Cornell offered his farm in Ithaca, New York, as a site and $500,000 of his personal fortune as an initial endowment. Fellow senator and educator Andrew Dickson White agreed to be the first president. During the next three years, White oversaw the construction of the first two buildings and traveled to attract students and faculty. The university was inaugurated on October 7, 1868, and 412 men were enrolled the next day.

    Cornell developed as a technologically innovative institution, applying its research to its own campus and to outreach efforts. For example, in 1883 it was one of the first university campuses to use electricity from a water-powered dynamo to light the grounds. Since 1894, Cornell has included colleges that are state funded and fulfill statutory requirements; it has also administered research and extension activities that have been jointly funded by state and federal matching programs.

    Cornell has had active alumni since its earliest classes. It was one of the first universities to include alumni-elected representatives on its Board of Trustees. Cornell was also among the Ivies that had heightened student activism during the 1960s related to cultural issues; civil rights; and opposition to the Vietnam War, with protests and occupations resulting in the resignation of Cornell’s president and the restructuring of university governance. Today the university has more than 4,000 courses. Cornell is also known for the Residential Club Fire of 1967, a fire in the Residential Club building that killed eight students and one professor.

    Since 2000, Cornell has been expanding its international programs. In 2004, the university opened the Weill Cornell Medical College in Qatar. It has partnerships with institutions in India, Singapore, and the People’s Republic of China. Former president Jeffrey S. Lehman described the university, with its high international profile, a “transnational university”. On March 9, 2004, Cornell and Stanford University laid the cornerstone for a new ‘Bridging the Rift Center’ to be built and jointly operated for education on the Israel–Jordan border.

    Research

    Cornell, a research university, is ranked fourth in the world in producing the largest number of graduates who go on to pursue PhDs in engineering or the natural sciences at American institutions, and fifth in the world in producing graduates who pursue PhDs at American institutions in any field. Research is a central element of the university’s mission; in 2009 Cornell spent $671 million on science and engineering research and development, the 16th highest in the United States. Cornell is classified among “R1: Doctoral Universities – Very high research activity”.

    For the 2016–17 fiscal year, the university spent $984.5 million on research. Federal sources constitute the largest source of research funding, with total federal investment of $438.2 million. The agencies contributing the largest share of that investment are The Department of Health and Human Services and the National Science Foundation, accounting for 49.6% and 24.4% of all federal investment, respectively. Cornell was on the top-ten list of U.S. universities receiving the most patents in 2003, and was one of the nation’s top five institutions in forming start-up companies. In 2004–05, Cornell received 200 invention disclosures; filed 203 U.S. patent applications; completed 77 commercial license agreements; and distributed royalties of more than $4.1 million to Cornell units and inventors.

    Since 1962, Cornell has been involved in unmanned missions to Mars. In the 21st century, Cornell had a hand in the Mars Exploration Rover Mission. Cornell’s Steve Squyres, Principal Investigator for the Athena Science Payload, led the selection of the landing zones and requested data collection features for the Spirit and Opportunity rovers. NASA-JPL/Caltech engineers took those requests and designed the rovers to meet them. The rovers, both of which have operated long past their original life expectancies, are responsible for the discoveries that were awarded 2004 Breakthrough of the Year honors by Science. Control of the Mars rovers has shifted between National Aeronautics and Space Administration ’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory at The California Institute of Technology and Cornell’s Space Sciences Building.

    Further, Cornell researchers discovered the rings around the planet Uranus, and Cornell built and operated the telescope at Arecibo Observatory located in Arecibo, Puerto Rico until 2011, when they transferred the operations to SRI International, the Universities Space Research Association and the Metropolitan University of Puerto Rico [Universidad Metropolitana de Puerto Rico].

    The Automotive Crash Injury Research Project was begun in 1952. It pioneered the use of crash testing, originally using corpses rather than dummies. The project discovered that improved door locks; energy-absorbing steering wheels; padded dashboards; and seat belts could prevent an extraordinary percentage of injuries.

    In the early 1980s, Cornell deployed the first IBM 3090-400VF and coupled two IBM 3090-600E systems to investigate coarse-grained parallel computing. In 1984, the National Science Foundation began work on establishing five new supercomputer centers, including the Cornell Center for Advanced Computing, to provide high-speed computing resources for research within the United States. As a National Science Foundation center, Cornell deployed the first IBM Scalable Parallel supercomputer.

    In the 1990s, Cornell developed scheduling software and deployed the first supercomputer built by Dell. Most recently, Cornell deployed Red Cloud, one of the first cloud computing services designed specifically for research. Today, the center is a partner on the National Science Foundation XSEDE-Extreme Science Engineering Discovery Environment supercomputing program, providing coordination for XSEDE architecture and design, systems reliability testing, and online training using the Cornell Virtual Workshop learning platform.

    Cornell scientists have researched the fundamental particles of nature for more than 70 years. Cornell physicists, such as Hans Bethe, contributed not only to the foundations of nuclear physics but also participated in the Manhattan Project. In the 1930s, Cornell built the second cyclotron in the United States. In the 1950s, Cornell physicists became the first to study synchrotron radiation.

    During the 1990s, the Cornell Electron Storage Ring, located beneath Alumni Field, was the world’s highest-luminosity electron-positron collider. After building the synchrotron at Cornell, Robert R. Wilson took a leave of absence to become the founding director of DOE’s Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory, which involved designing and building the largest accelerator in the United States.

    Cornell’s accelerator and high-energy physics groups are involved in the design of the proposed ILC-International Linear Collider (JP) and plan to participate in its construction and operation. The International Linear Collider (JP), to be completed in the late 2010s, will complement the The European Organization for Nuclear Research [La Organización Europea para la Investigación Nuclear][Organisation européenne pour la recherche nucléaire] [Europäische Organisation für Kernforschung](CH)[CERN] <a href="http://”>Large Hadron Collider(CH) and shed light on questions such as the identity of dark matter and the existence of extra dimensions.
    As part of its research work, Cornell has established several research collaborations with universities around the globe. For example, a partnership with the University of Sussex(UK) (including the Institute of Development Studies at Sussex) allows research and teaching collaboration between the two institutions.

     
  • richardmitnick 4:20 pm on January 31, 2023 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "Lucy spacecraft to visit an asteroid this year", A new target added to its mission: the tiny asteroid (152830) 1999 VD57, , Astronomy, , , , , , Lucy’s original plan was to visit the main-belt asteroid (52246) Donaldjohanson in 2025 followed by a tour of nine Trojan asteroids starting in 2033., , The new target will be a good test for the spacecraft’s inventive tracking system.   

    From “EarthSky” And The National Aeronautics and Space Administration : “Lucy spacecraft to visit an asteroid this year” 

    1

    From “EarthSky”

    And

    The National Aeronautics and Space Administration

    1.31.23
    Kelly Kizer Whitt

    NASA’s Lucy spacecraft is in the midst of three Earth flybys that ultimately will fling it to the main asteroid belt and Jupiter’s Trojan asteroids. In October 2022, a year after the spacecraft’s launch, Lucy made its first flyby of Earth. On January 24, 2023, Lucy’s team added a new target to its mission: the tiny asteroid (152830) 1999 VD57. With a small maneuver, Lucy will be able to get a close look at this asteroid by late 2023, two years ahead of its originally planned rendezvous with a main-belt asteroid.

    On November 1, 2023, Lucy will swing past the still-unnamed (152830) 1999 VD57. To get there, engineers will begin a series of small maneuvers in May 2023. As a bonus, the detour allows scientists to conduct an engineering test of the spacecraft’s asteroid-tracking navigation system.

    Finding the new target

    Lucy’s original plan was to visit the main-belt asteroid (52246) Donaldjohanson in 2025, followed by a tour of nine Trojan asteroids starting in 2033. But the team found a small, conveniently located asteroid that Lucy could visit between its first and second gravity assists from Earth. Raphael Marschall of the Nice Observatory in France identified asteroid 1999 VD57, which is just 0.4 miles (700 m) in size. Marschall said:

    “There are millions of asteroids in the main asteroid belt. I selected 500,000 asteroids with well-defined orbits to see if Lucy might be traveling close enough to get a good look at any of them, even from a distance. This asteroid really stood out. Lucy’s trajectory as originally designed will take it within 40,000 miles of the asteroid, at least three times closer than the next closest asteroid.”

    With a slight change of plans and direction, the team now can bring Lucy even closer to the asteroid. From the original distance of 40,000 miles, Lucy will now buzz by at 280 miles (450 km) distant.

    A tracking-system test for the Lucy spacecraft

    The new target will be a good test for the spacecraft’s inventive tracking system. Engineers created the new system to solve a long-standing problem for flyby missions. Previously, it’s been difficult to determine just how far a spacecraft is from an asteroid. In addition, that makes it hard to know exactly where to point the cameras. Hal Levison, Lucy principal investigator from the Southwest Research Institute, said:

    “In the past, most flyby missions have accounted for this uncertainty by taking a lot of images of the region where the asteroid might be, meaning low efficiency and lots of images of blank space. Lucy will be the first flyby mission to employ this innovative and complex system to automatically track the asteroid during the encounter. This novel system will allow the team to take many more images of the target.”

    The advantages of 1999 VD57

    The little asteroid 1999 VD57 will be a great proving ground for the new procedure. The angle at which Lucy will approach the asteroid relative to the sun will be similar to the Trojan asteroid encounters. Therefore, the scientists will get to practice under similar conditions years before the main event.

    3
    When the Lucy spacecraft reaches the inner edge of the main asteroid belt in fall 2023, it will fly by the small, still-unnamed asteroid (152830) 1999 VD57. This artist’s concept shows an overhead view of Lucy’s path through the inner solar system around November 1, 2023. Image via NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center.

    See the full article here .

    Comments are invited and will be appreciated, especially if the reader finds any errors which I can correct. Use “Reply”.


    five-ways-keep-your-child-safe-school-shootings
    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.


    Stem Education Coalition

    The National Aeronautics and Space Administration is the agency of the United States government that is responsible for the nation’s civilian space program and for aeronautics and aerospace research.

    President Dwight D. Eisenhower established the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) in 1958 with a distinctly civilian (rather than military) orientation encouraging peaceful applications in space science. The National Aeronautics and Space Act was passed on July 29, 1958, disestablishing NASA’s predecessor, the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics (NACA). The new agency became operational on October 1, 1958.

    Since that time, most U.S. space exploration efforts have been led by NASA, including the Apollo moon-landing missions, the Skylab space station, and later the Space Shuttle. Currently, NASA is supporting the International Space Station and is overseeing the development of the Orion Multi-Purpose Crew Vehicle and Commercial Crew vehicles. The agency is also responsible for the Launch Services Program (LSP) which provides oversight of launch operations and countdown management for unmanned NASA launches. Most recently, NASA announced a new Space Launch System that it said would take the agency’s astronauts farther into space than ever before and lay the cornerstone for future human space exploration efforts by the U.S.

    NASA science is focused on better understanding Earth through the Earth Observing System, advancing heliophysics through the efforts of the Science Mission Directorate’s Heliophysics Research Program, exploring bodies throughout the Solar System with advanced robotic missions such as New Horizons, and researching astrophysics topics, such as the Big Bang, through the Great Observatories [Hubble, Chandra,
    Spitzer and associated programs, and now the NASA/ESA/CSA James Webb Space Telescope. NASA shares data with various national and international organizations such as from the [JAXA]Greenhouse Gases Observing Satellite.

    Deborah Byrd created the EarthSky radio series in 1991 and founded EarthSky.org in 1994. Today, she serves as Editor-in-Chief of this website. She has won a galaxy of awards from the broadcasting and science communities, including having an asteroid named 3505 Byrd in her honor. A science communicator and educator since 1976, Byrd believes in science as a force for good in the world and a vital tool for the 21st century. “Being an EarthSky editor is like hosting a big global party for cool nature-lovers,” she says.

     
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