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  • richardmitnick 9:58 pm on November 29, 2022 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "The Turning of the Stellar Seasons", , , , , The Kavli Foundation   

    From The Kavli Foundation : “The Turning of the Stellar Seasons” 

    KavliFoundation

    From The Kavli Foundation

    11.11.22 [Just today in social media.]
    Adam Hadhazy

    1
    Stars, like leaves, change color as they age, and scientists have deduced this chromatic progression.

    With Fall in full swing in many seasonal places in the Northern Hemisphere, the fierce verdancy of Summer foliage has given way to crimsons and ochres. A changing of hues similarly happens for many kinds of stars as they, too, advance into the autumnal stages of stellar life. Our Sun is a prime example. Classified as a G star, it presently appears white in the visible spectrum that our eyes see. The Sun has blazed forth in this way for more than four billion years, as seemingly potent and steady as those green leaves soaking up that very sunlight for the last few months. But in another five billion years or so, the Sun will likewise start Octoberizing. As is the way for all stars with about half the Sun’s mass, up through about five solar masses, the Sun will evolve into a so-called red giant.

    1

    The steady eons-long supply of fresh hydrogen to fuse into helium will have finally run low in the Sun’s core, and the aging star’s outer layers will balloon outward, cooling and reddening. The Sun’s color-changing will not end there. Another billion years or so later, the Sun will have worked through all its available nuclear fuel, shed its outer layers entirely into space, and at last come to its Winter. Appropriately enough, this along-in-years remnant of the Sun will be a gleaming white in appearance, a “white dwarf” in astronomer parlance, and evocative of a snow-locked barrenness. Scientists can predict these eventualities with extremely high confidence, thanks to our observations of countless other stars going through these stages and our deep theoretical understanding of the hows and whys. The scientific process thus enables us to know why the innumerable leaves above our heads change as they do, as well as also—though much farther above our heads—the innumerable stars.

    Directly sampled asteroid’s composition is unlike that of Earth-fallen meteorites.

    A detailed analysis of samples brought back to Earth of the asteroid Ryugu have revealed the asteroid has different elemental abundances than all other space rocks known to have crashed onto our planet as meteorites. The findings suggest that these other meteorites have been contaminated by their fall through Earth’s atmosphere. By the same token, the research suggests that Ryugu’s pristine samples—which were delivered to Earth in a sealed vessel—are reflective of actual, eons-old, original elemental abundances out in the Solar System. The analysis of the special Ryugu samples was done nondestructively through the use of muon beams from a particle accelerator in Japan.

    Members of the Kavli Institute for the Physics and Mathematics of the Universe at the University of Tokyo contributed to the study effort.
    KavliFoundation
    The Kavli Institute for the Physics and Mathematics of the Universe (IPMU) [カブリ数物連携宇宙研](JP)
    Kavli IPMU
    At

    The University of Tokyo [(東京大学](JP)

    3
    Figure 1: (left) A muonic x-ray created after a muon is captured by an irradiated material, and (right) a sample of the asteroid Ryugu. (Credit: (left image) Muon analysis team, (right image) JAXA)

    In a Research Highlight, Noah Kurinsky—a physicist at the Kavli Institute for Particle Astrophysics and Cosmology (KIPAC) at Stanford University—explains why the search for hypothetical dark matter particles at extremely low mass/energy scales is so experimentally challenging.
    KIPAC bloc
    The Stanford University Kavli Institute for Particle Astrophysics and Cosmology
    Given the higher mass/energy scales where dark matter has been ruled out, researchers are now looking for superlight particles. These particles would only possess the equivalent oomph of low-energy photons, specifically that of long-wavelength infrared light. This weakness poses an inherent problem because photons at that energy level are continually produced by all objects at room temperature. The solution? Building dark matter detectors with far greater sensitivity than typical infrared detectors and operating the detectors at near-absolute-zero temperatures to eliminate the background infrared radiation signal from the environment. Neither of those needs is easily met, however, and comes with other difficulties, as the Highlight further explains. That said, KIPAC researchers and their colleagues understand the challenges well, and are continuing to make advances to meet them.

    Shortest orbiting stellar pair discovered

    Astrophysical records are made to be broken! A new study—led by researchers at MIT’s Kavli Institute for Astrophysics and Space Research—has just such a report.
    MIT Kavli Institute for Astrophysics and Space Research.
    The Massachusetts Institute of Technology Kavli Institute For Astrophysics and Space Research

    The study documents the shortest-orbiting stellar pair ever observed, where the two stars complete an orbit around each other in a whizzy 51 minutes. The stellar pair is a so-called cataclysmic variable, where one star is a typical star like the Sun but the other is the remnant of a sunlike star called a white dwarf. The researchers ran simulations predicting how the stars’ orbit will evolve further. Compellingly, these predictions ended up matching separate predictions put out decades ago about how cataclysmic variables will transition to ultrashort orbital periods before drifting farther apart. The agreeing estimates prognosticate that the stars will reach their closest point in an 18-minute orbit in approximately 70 million years.

    The amazing story of Subrahmanyan Chandrasekhar

    Subrahmanyan-Chandrasekhar-1983. Britannica

    Daniel Holz and Robert Wald, both affiliated with the Kavli Institute for Cosmological Physics at the University of Chicago, were guests on a recent episode of the Big Brains podcast supported by the university.
    3
    Holz and Wald discuss the remarkable story of how Subrahmanyan Chandrasekhar, who at just 19 years old made a stunning breakthrough in the understanding of the objects that came to be called black holes. A young immigrant from India, “Chandra,” as Subrahmanyan went by, provocatively proposed to the British scientific establishment in 1935 that these radical objects must exist. Chandra proved to be right, eventually winning a Nobel Prize for his insights into stellar evolution, and he even had a space telescope named after him.

    Wald came to UChicago in 1974 as a postdoc and met often with Chandra, who had become a professor there, and Holz also overlapped with Chandra as a grad student. Both researchers have followed in Chandra’s footsteps and become experts on black holes.

    Born under pure skies and destined to be an astrophysicist

    KIPAC’s Enrique López Rodríguez is the “star” of a profile appearing in Stanford University’s Stanford Report. López Rodríguez was born in the Canary Islands, a remote archipelago famous as one of the best places in the world to conduct astronomy thanks to its pristine skies. At KIPAC, his research is galactic in nature, focusing on the roles of magnetic fields in the formation and evolution of galaxies, including the growth and activity of the supermassive black holes found in many galaxies’ cores. The profile relates how López Rodríguez went from struggling through grade school and living with his grandmother to being a scientist at a prestigious institution who mentors previously incarcerated students.

    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 Kavli Foundation based in Oxnard, California is dedicated to the goals of advancing science for the benefit of humanity and promoting increased public understanding and support for scientists and their work.

    The Foundation’s mission is implemented through an international program of research institutes; professorships; and symposia in the fields of astrophysics; nanoscience; neuroscience; and theoretical physics as well as prizes in the fields of astrophysics; nanoscience; and neuroscience.

    The Kavli Foundation was established in December 2000 by its founder and benefactor Fred Kavli a Norwegian business leader and philanthropist who made his money by creating Kavlico- a company that made sensors; and by investing in real estate in southern California and Nevada. David Auston, a former president of Case Western Reserve University and former Bell Labs scientist, was the first president of the Kavli Foundation and is largely credited with the vision of the scientific investments. Kavli died in 2013 and his foundation is currently actively involved in establishing research institutes at universities throughout the United States, in Europe, and in Asia.

    To date, the Kavli Foundation has made grants to establish Kavli Institutes on the campuses of 16 major universities. In addition to the Kavli Institutes, six Kavli professorships have been established: two at University of California-Santa Barbara, one each at University of California-Los Angeles, University of California-Irvine, Columbia University, Cornell University, and California Institute of Technology.

    The Kavli Institutes

    Astrophysics

    The Kavli Institute for Particle Astrophysics and Cosmology at Stanford University
    The Kavli Institute for Cosmological Physics, University of Chicago
    The Kavli Institute for Astrophysics and Space Research at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology
    The Kavli Institute for Astronomy and Astrophysics at The Peking University [北京大学](CN)
    The Kavli Institute for Cosmology at The University of Cambridge (UK)
    The Kavli Institute for the Physics and Mathematics of the Universe at The University of Tokyo[(東京大] (JP)

    Nanoscience

    The Kavli Institute for Nanoscale Science at Cornell University
    The Kavli Institute of Nanoscience at The Delft University of Technology [Technische Universiteit Delft](NL)
    The Kavli Nanoscience Institute at The California Institute of Technology
    The Kavli Institute for Bionano Science and Technology at Harvard University
    The Kavli Energy NanoSciences Institute at The University of California-Berkeley and The DOE’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

    Neuroscience

    The Kavli Institute for Brain Science at Columbia University
    The Kavli Institute for Brain & Mind at The University of California-San Diego
    The Kavli Institute for Neuroscience at Yale University
    The Kavli Institute for Systems Neuroscience at The Norwegian University of Science and Technology [Norges teknisk-naturvitenskapelige universitet](NO)
    The Kavli Neuroscience Discovery Institute at The Johns Hopkins University
    The Kavli Neural Systems Institute at The Rockefeller University
    The Kavli Institute for Fundamental Neuroscience at The University of California-San Francisco

    Theoretical physics

    Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics at The University of California-Santa Barbara
    The Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics China at The Chinese Academy of Sciences [中国科学院](CN)

     
  • richardmitnick 8:02 pm on October 21, 2022 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "Astrophysical Complexity", , , , Bizarre fast radio burst points to a complex system for its origins, Chatting about the big bang and "cosmological vertigo" with a Kavli astrophysicist, , Steps forward and steps back in defending Earth from dangerous space rocks, The Kavli Foundation, Unwrapping the Fermi cocoon, Why xenon is a dark matter detector go-to   

    From The Kavli Foundation : “Astrophysical Complexity” 

    KavliFoundation

    From The Kavli Foundation

    10.12.22
    Adam Hadhazy

    Research highlights from Kavli Astrophysics Institutes

    The universe has a habit of making a mash of simple explanations, as Kavli Institute researchers well know. Take fast radio bursts (FRBs for short). As their name implies, they manifest as tremendously powerful, short-lived blasts of radio waves. Astronomers have only known of their existence since 2007, making FRBs one of the hottest new topics around. As we have come to learn over the years, some FRBs are one-off events, while other FRBs repeat from a few to even thousands of times. This range of presentations suggests that not all FRBs are of a kind, and thus that more than a single kind of astrophysical scenario can spawn such a phenomenon. As a study with Kavli research involvement that published in September shows, there may indeed be a lot of so-far-unappreciated intricacies when it comes to FRBs. This eschewing of astrophysical simplicity holds for Type Ia supernovae too. Irksomely, these explosions have at least two pathways of formation: either from white dwarf stars accreting matter from other stars, or from white dwarfs colliding with each other. And again, as with FRBs, many intricacies are afoot. It does seem like in science, Occam’s Razor does ultimately have to contend with an additional axiom: the devil is in the details.

    Bizarre fast radio burst points to a complex system for its origins

    A new study [Nature (below)] led by members of the Kavli Institute for Astronomy and Astrophysics at Peking University has dramatically deepened the mystery of fast radio bursts (FRBs). The researchers have reported on an FRB source that sent out nearly 2000 bursts over almost a two-month period, with strange variations in magnetic intensity at the source. The richly-detailed new findings suggest a dynamic, complex stellar environment is behind the rapid FRB repeater. Magnetars, which are hyper-magnetized remnants of massive stars, have long been suspected as FRB generators, though in the case of the new source, a companion star or other object is theorized to be additionally involved. Loads more FRB data to help solve this and other mysteries will come in over the next few years, thanks to the Five-hundred-meter Aperture Spherical radio Telescope (FAST) in China, which made the observations of the new study’s FRB, and other instruments, like the Canadian Hydrogen Intensity Mapping Experiment (CHIME).

    Chatting about the big bang and “cosmological vertigo” with a Kavli astrophysicist

    A recent article for The Guardian poses the profound question, “Will we ever see pictures of the big bang?” Answering the question and others in a Q&A [below] is Matt Bothwell, the public astronomer at the University of Cambridge and a member of the Kavli Institute for Cosmology, Cambridge. The short answer, alas, is “no,” because the cooling and expanding universe, as Bothwell explains, remained opaque to light early in its existence (for roughly 380,000 years post-big bang). Read the entertaining piece to find out further how the universe is actually like a pair of tights, as well as what “cosmological vertigo” is.

    Why xenon is a dark matter detector go-to

    The continuing hunt for dark matter with big detector dragnet vats of liquid xenon has been in the news recently. Just in July, early null results were announced from two major experiments, LUX-ZEPLIN (LZ) and XENONnT.

    (The experiments have Kavli astrophysics researcher involvement, particularly from the Kavli Institute for Particle Astrophysics and Cosmology (KIPAC) at Stanford University for the former and the Kavli Institute for the Physics and Mathematics of the Universe (Kavli IPMU) at Tokyo University for the latter.) In a recent article, KIPAC scientists explain that xenon is such an attractive material for this scientific venture because xenon is a noble gas, and since noble gases rarely chemically react with other elements, virtually any reactive activity detected would thus have an external origin. (Dark matter detectors must accordingly be built deep underground to limit exposure to confounding radiation and particles.) The KIPAC researchers also explain the complex techniques involved in purifying xenon to ensure there is little to nothing to interfere with pristine measurement-taking.

    Steps forward and steps back in defending Earth from dangerous space rocks

    On September 26, NASA’s DART mission successfully slammed a spacecraft into an asteroid to test a planetary defense strategy of momentum transfer, where imparting a bit of oomph to an asteroid could ultimately deviate the rock from its collision course.


    A recent article for Grid featured comments on DART and more from Richard Binzel, a member of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Kavli Institute for Astrophysics and Space Research. Binzel commented on the importance of DART, while also noting his concern—shared by others quoted in the article—over the fate of NASA’s Near-Earth Object (NEO) Surveyor mission.

    Potential budget cuts for the mission, whose goal is to spot Earth-threatening asteroids, might end up delaying or even jeopardizing the mission’s launch, slated for later this decade.

    Unwrapping the Fermi cocoon

    The true nature of the so-called Fermi cocoon has been revealed.

    3
    Figure 1. A small satellite galaxy (green globe on the bottom left) of the Milky Way – called Sagittarius – has been observed from Earth through giant lobes of gamma radiation (aka the Fermi bubbles, purple areas below and above the galaxy). Although Sagittarius is stuffed with dark matter, this is unlikely to be the cause of the observed emission. (Credit: Kavli IPMU)

    The Fermi cocoon is a small region of particularly bright gamma-ray emission thought to be part of a big, so-called Fermi bubble of gamma rays ballooning out of our galaxy.

    4
    Figure 2. Gamma-ray image of the Fermi bubbles (blue) overlaid on a map of RR Lyrae stars (red) observed by the GAIA telescope. The shape and orientation of the Sagittarius (Sgr) dwarf match perfectly well those of the Fermi cocoon – a bright substructure of gamma-ray radiation in the southern part of the Fermi bubbles. This is strong evidence that the Fermi cocoon is due to energetic processes occurring in Sagittarius, which from our perspective, is located behind the Fermi bubbles. (Credit: Crocker, Macias, Mackey, Krumholz, Ando, Horiuchi et al. (2022))

    The Fermi cocoon, it turns out, is a concentration of gamma rays beaming from the Sagittarius Dwarf Spheroidal Galaxy, a neighbor of the Milky Way. Researchers at Kavli IPMU are part of the team that announced the findings. While hypothetical dark matter particle annihilations were a compelling possibility for these excess gamma rays, millisecond pulsars—fast-spinning remnants of massive stars—are the likely source of the Fermi cocoon, just as they are for excess gamma rays emanating from within the Milky Way.

    Details of this study were published in Nature Astronomy [below] on September 5.

    Science papers:
    Nature
    Nature Astronomy

    Q&A

    See the full article here .


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

    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.

    Stem Education Coalition

    The Kavli Foundation based in Oxnard, California is dedicated to the goals of advancing science for the benefit of humanity and promoting increased public understanding and support for scientists and their work.

    The Foundation’s mission is implemented through an international program of research institutes; professorships; and symposia in the fields of astrophysics; nanoscience; neuroscience; and theoretical physics as well as prizes in the fields of astrophysics; nanoscience; and neuroscience.

    The Kavli Foundation was established in December 2000 by its founder and benefactor Fred Kavli a Norwegian business leader and philanthropist who made his money by creating Kavlico- a company that made sensors; and by investing in real estate in southern California and Nevada. David Auston, a former president of Case Western Reserve University and former Bell Labs scientist, was the first president of the Kavli Foundation and is largely credited with the vision of the scientific investments. Kavli died in 2013 and his foundation is currently actively involved in establishing research institutes at universities throughout the United States, in Europe, and in Asia.

    To date, the Kavli Foundation has made grants to establish Kavli Institutes on the campuses of 16 major universities. In addition to the Kavli Institutes, six Kavli professorships have been established: two at University of California-Santa Barbara, one each at University of California-Los Angeles, University of California-Irvine, Columbia University, Cornell University, and California Institute of Technology.

    The Kavli Institutes

    Astrophysics

    The Kavli Institute for Particle Astrophysics and Cosmology at Stanford University
    The Kavli Institute for Cosmological Physics, University of Chicago
    The Kavli Institute for Astrophysics and Space Research at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology
    The Kavli Institute for Astronomy and Astrophysics at The Peking University [北京大学](CN)
    The Kavli Institute for Cosmology at The University of Cambridge (UK)
    The Kavli Institute for the Physics and Mathematics of the Universe at The University of Tokyo[(東京大] (JP)

    Nanoscience

    The Kavli Institute for Nanoscale Science at Cornell University
    The Kavli Institute of Nanoscience at The Delft University of Technology [Technische Universiteit Delft](NL)
    The Kavli Nanoscience Institute at The California Institute of Technology
    The Kavli Institute for Bionano Science and Technology at Harvard University
    The Kavli Energy NanoSciences Institute at The University of California-Berkeley and The DOE’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

    Neuroscience

    The Kavli Institute for Brain Science at Columbia University
    The Kavli Institute for Brain & Mind at The University of California-San Diego
    The Kavli Institute for Neuroscience at Yale University
    The Kavli Institute for Systems Neuroscience at The Norwegian University of Science and Technology [Norges teknisk-naturvitenskapelige universitet](NO)
    The Kavli Neuroscience Discovery Institute at The Johns Hopkins University
    The Kavli Neural Systems Institute at The Rockefeller University
    The Kavli Institute for Fundamental Neuroscience at The University of California-San Francisco

    Theoretical physics

    Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics at The University of California-Santa Barbara
    The Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics China at The Chinese Academy of Sciences [中国科学院](CN)

     
  • richardmitnick 12:36 pm on July 28, 2022 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "The Undiscoverable Country of Astrophysics", , , Stars-not quasars-poured forth the potent light that transformed the early universe., The Kavli Foundation   

    From The Kavli Foundation : “The Undiscoverable Country of Astrophysics” 

    KavliFoundation

    From The Kavli Foundation

    July 15, 2022
    Adam Hadhazy

    1
    The Undiscoverable Country of Astrophysics | Kavli Foundation.
    MIT astronomers have discovered a new multiplanet system that lies just 10 parsecs, or about 33 light-years, from Earth, making it one of the closest known multiplanet systems to our own. The star at the heart of the system likely hosts at least two terrestrial, Earth-sized planets. Credits: Image: MIT News, with TESS Satellite figure courtesy of NASA.

    ___________________________________________________________________
    National Aeronautics Space Agency/Massachusetts Institute of Technology TESS

    NASA/MIT Tess in the building.

    National Aeronautics Space Agency/Massachusetts Institute of Technology TESS – Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite replaced the Kepler Space Telescope in search for exoplanets. TESS is a NASA Astrophysics Explorer mission led and operated by Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and managed by NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center.


    The Massachusetts Institute of Technology


    The NASA Goddard Space Flight Center

    Additional partners include Northrop Grumman, based in Falls Church, Virginia; NASA’s Ames Research Center in California’s Silicon Valley; the Center for Astrophysics – Harvard and Smithsonian; MIT Lincoln Laboratory; and the NASA Space Telescope Science Institute in Baltimore.


    ___________________________________________________________________

    We humans are natural explorers. We’ve been all over our planet and even to the moon. On some level, then, we constitutionally are challenged by the fact that when it comes to astrophysics, it almost exclusively involves places we humans in all likelihood will never go. Even if a faster-than-light propulsion method eventually proves physically, technologically, and economically possible—all huge, huge ifs—it’s still safe to say that the far reaches of the universe, billions of light years away, will never be plied by our distant descendants. It is accordingly with implacable remove that we must gaze upon all the contents of the rest of the universe. Researchers at Kavli astrophysics institutes do so every day, extending their minds to capture something that will forever be out of our reach—but hopefully not beyond our comprehension.

    Stars-not quasars-poured forth the potent light that transformed the early universe.

    Several hundred million years after the Big Bang, the universe underwent a dramatic change. The hydrogen gas that permeates space (albeit diffusely) went from being in an energetically neutral, unexcited state back to the ionized, energized state it had been in in the early times right after the Big Bang. This transformation is known as cosmic reionization and the mechanism or mechanisms behind it have long been investigated. A new study [Nature (below)] has now provided key evidence that one suspected reionization contributor actually likely played only a minimal role. The study is led by Linhua Jiang of the Kavli Institute for Astronomy & Astrophysics (KIAA) at Peking University. Jiang and colleagues examined the role of quasars, the term for galaxies harboring actively feeding supermassive black holes that are known to blast out copious amounts of radiation. Analyzing previous observations of deep space (and time) by the Hubble Space Telescope turned up zip-zero quasars across a significant stretch of the reionization era. Extrapolating from there, the researchers find that the overwhelming source of the high-energy light that triggered cosmic reionization must have come from newborn stars in the earliest galaxies. The researchers cap the overall quasar contribution to reionization at less than 7%. More research will need to be done to bolster and expand on these results, but it appears that the drivers of reionization are becoming clearer.

    Showing how the first giant groupings of galaxies congealed

    2
    Screenshots from the simulation show (top) the distribution of matter corresponding to the observed galaxy distribution at a light travel time of 11 billion years (when the Universe was only 2.76 billion years old or 20% its current age), and (bottom) the distribution of matter in the same region after 11 billion lights years or corresponding to our present time. (Credit: Ata et al.)

    How did the first galaxy clusters come into being? A new study [Nature Astronomy (below)] led by researchers at the Kavli Institute for the Physics and Mathematics of the Universe (Kavli IPMU) at Tokyo University has now reported first-of-its-kind results simulating the full life cycle of clusters. The results closely match observations of clusters as they existed roughly 11 billion years ago. The simulation—dubbed COSTCO for COnstrained Simulations of The COsmos Field—adds rich detail to the models that have been built so far capturing the physical parameters giving rise to huge conglomerations of galaxies. By factoring in the overall large-scale cosmic environment wherein clusters evolved, the results further served as a test of leading cosmological theories. The findings advance the state-of-the-art of distant universe simulations and will help in blazing many new research trails.

    Two rocky worlds “unearthed” in our cosmic vicinity

    There’s a new multiplanet system in the neighborhood! The Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite (TESS) has discovered a solar system with two rocky, Earth-sized worlds in it and located just 33 light-years away—a mere cosmic hop-and-a-skip. Neither world is likely to be habitable, though, given their close proximities to their host star. TESS, which launched in 2018, is a major exoplanet hunter whose development was spearheaded by researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Kavli Institute for Astrophysics and Space Research (MKI). MKI scientists reported on these latest results. The two, newfound, sweltering Earth-sized worlds found will be prime targets for study by the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST), which launched just in December 2021. JWST will gather key clues about the planets, for instance if they have any atmospheres to speak of, overall enhancing our understanding of the countless worlds beyond our solar system.

    Slashing computational energy costs for big-data astrophysics

    As with many other fields, big data will be a big deal moving forward in astrophysics. Stonkingly large data volumes are expected from the upcoming Vera Rubin Observatory’s Legacy Survey of Space (LSST), as well as two new space telescopes, the Nancy Grace Roman and Euclid, among other instruments. On a practical level, all that data is energy-intensive and thus costly to store on servers. The data is also unwieldy and time-consuming to process. For instance, analysis of some of the latest Dark Energy Survey data ate up 21 days on top-of-the-line supercomputing clusters, and far bigger computing tasks are on the way. That’s according to a recent Highlight by Chun-Hao To at the Kavli Institute for Particle Astrophysics and Cosmology (KIPAC) at Stanford University. The post goes on to describe a solution put forth by To and colleagues in a recent paper [JCAP (below)]. They built a machine learning-based tool that speeds up analysis by approximating complicated models and then uses probability distributions to extract the sought-after cosmological results. The upshot is an eight to as much as a 50-fold reduction in computational costs. Projected for the first-year analysis of LSST data, the savings would be around $300,000 on energy costs, plus 2400 tons of CO2 emissions saved.

    Study puts the kibosh on dark matter postulated for galactic gamma-ray overabundance

    Hopes have faded that an unexplained gamma ray signal from the heart of our Milky Way Galaxy, originally picked up in 2009 by the Fermi Gamma-Ray Space Telescope, could be a signal of hypothetical dark matter. This mysterious substance is estimated to outnumber normal matter about five times over, yet dark matter’s presence has only been inferable through its exerted gravity. A new study [Nature Astronomy (below)] with involvement from a former member of Kavli IPMU has now put another nail in the coffin of the dark matter explanation for the gamma-ray signal. Fast-spinning remnants of large stars, called millisecond pulsars, have been offered up as radiation sources for the excess gamma rays. Undiscovered populations of these stellar remnants peppering the core of the Milky Way would indeed fit the bill, but how the significant numbers of such remnants could have accumulated there has been unclear. In the new study, researchers show that the evolution of binary star systems, where matter is exchanged between the stars over time, could produce millisecond pulsars that are not flung out into space, as in the case for other pulsars formed during the cataclysmic collapses of massive stars resulting in supernova explosions. Seekers of dark matter, of which there are many, will have to keep looking elsewhere, it seems.

    Science papers:
    Nature

    Nature Astronomy

    JCAP

    See the full article here .


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

    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.

    Stem Education Coalition

    The Kavli Foundation based in Oxnard, California is dedicated to the goals of advancing science for the benefit of humanity and promoting increased public understanding and support for scientists and their work.

    The Foundation’s mission is implemented through an international program of research institutes; professorships; and symposia in the fields of astrophysics; nanoscience; neuroscience; and theoretical physics as well as prizes in the fields of astrophysics; nanoscience; and neuroscience.

    The Kavli Foundation was established in December 2000 by its founder and benefactor Fred Kavli a Norwegian business leader and philanthropist who made his money by creating Kavlico- a company that made sensors; and by investing in real estate in southern California and Nevada. David Auston, a former president of Case Western Reserve University and former Bell Labs scientist, was the first president of the Kavli Foundation and is largely credited with the vision of the scientific investments. Kavli died in 2013 and his foundation is currently actively involved in establishing research institutes at universities throughout the United States, in Europe, and in Asia.

    To date, the Kavli Foundation has made grants to establish Kavli Institutes on the campuses of 16 major universities. In addition to the Kavli Institutes, six Kavli professorships have been established: two at University of California-Santa Barbara, one each at University of California-Los Angeles, University of California-Irvine, Columbia University, Cornell University, and California Institute of Technology.

    The Kavli Institutes

    Astrophysics

    The Kavli Institute for Particle Astrophysics and Cosmology at Stanford University
    The Kavli Institute for Cosmological Physics, University of Chicago
    The Kavli Institute for Astrophysics and Space Research at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology
    The Kavli Institute for Astronomy and Astrophysics at The Peking University [北京大学](CN)
    The Kavli Institute for Cosmology at The University of Cambridge (UK)
    The Kavli Institute for the Physics and Mathematics of the Universe at The University of Tokyo[(東京大] (JP)

    Nanoscience

    The Kavli Institute for Nanoscale Science at Cornell University
    The Kavli Institute of Nanoscience at The Delft University of Technology [Technische Universiteit Delft](NL)
    The Kavli Nanoscience Institute at The California Institute of Technology
    The Kavli Institute for Bionano Science and Technology at Harvard University
    The Kavli Energy NanoSciences Institute at The University of California-Berkeley and The DOE’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

    Neuroscience

    The Kavli Institute for Brain Science at Columbia University
    The Kavli Institute for Brain & Mind at The University of California-San Diego
    The Kavli Institute for Neuroscience at Yale University
    The Kavli Institute for Systems Neuroscience at The Norwegian University of Science and Technology[Norges teknisk-naturvitenskapelige universitet](NO)
    The Kavli Neuroscience Discovery Institute at The Johns Hopkins University
    The Kavli Neural Systems Institute at The Rockefeller University
    The Kavli Institute for Fundamental Neuroscience at The University of California-San Francisco

    Theoretical physics

    Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics at The University of California-Santa Barbara
    The Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics China at The Chinese Academy of Sciences [中国科学院](CN)nces

     
  • richardmitnick 8:17 am on June 13, 2022 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "The 2022 Kavli Prizes", , , , The Kavli Foundation   

    From The Kavli Foundation: “The 2022 Kavli Prizes” 

    KavliFoundation

    From The Kavli Foundation

    The 2022 Kavli Prizes recognize pioneering science in the development of helioseismology and asteroseismology; development of self-assembled monolayers on solid substrates and molecular-scale coatings to control surface properties; and the discovery of genes underlying a range of serious brain disorders.

    Astrophysics

    2

    Conny Aerts
    Jørgen Christensen-Dalsgaard
    Roger Ulrich

    For their pioneering work and leadership in the development of helioseismology and asteroseismology”.

    Nanoscience

    3

    Jacob Sagiv
    Ralph Nuzzo
    David Allara
    George Whitesides

    “For self-assembled monolayers (SAMs) on solid substrates: molecular coatings to control surface properties”.

    Neuroscience

    3

    Jean-Louis Mandel
    Harry Orr
    Christopher Walsh
    Huda Zoghbi

    “For pioneering the discovery of genes underlying a range of serious brain disorders”.

    See the full article here .


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

    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.

    Stem Education Coalition

    The Kavli Foundation based in Oxnard, California is dedicated to the goals of advancing science for the benefit of humanity and promoting increased public understanding and support for scientists and their work.

    The Foundation’s mission is implemented through an international program of research institutes; professorships; and symposia in the fields of astrophysics; nanoscience; neuroscience; and theoretical physics as well as prizes in the fields of astrophysics; nanoscience; and neuroscience.

    The Kavli Foundation was established in December 2000 by its founder and benefactor Fred Kavli a Norwegian business leader and philanthropist who made his money by creating Kavlico- a company that made sensors; and by investing in real estate in southern California and Nevada. David Auston, a former president of Case Western Reserve University and former Bell Labs scientist, was the first president of the Kavli Foundation and is largely credited with the vision of the scientific investments. Kavli died in 2013 and his foundation is currently actively involved in establishing research institutes at universities throughout the United States, in Europe, and in Asia.

    To date, the Kavli Foundation has made grants to establish Kavli Institutes on the campuses of 16 major universities. In addition to the Kavli Institutes, six Kavli professorships have been established: two at University of California-Santa Barbara, one each at University of California-Los Angeles, University of California-Irvine, Columbia University, Cornell University, and California Institute of Technology.

    The Kavli Institutes

    Astrophysics

    The Kavli Institute for Particle Astrophysics and Cosmology at Stanford University
    The Kavli Institute for Cosmological Physics, University of Chicago
    The Kavli Institute for Astrophysics and Space Research at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology
    The Kavli Institute for Astronomy and Astrophysics at The Peking University [北京大学](CN)
    The Kavli Institute for Cosmology at The University of Cambridge (UK)
    The Kavli Institute for the Physics and Mathematics of the Universe at The University of Tokyo[(東京大] (JP)

    Nanoscience

    The Kavli Institute for Nanoscale Science at Cornell University
    The Kavli Institute of Nanoscience at The Delft University of Technology [Technische Universiteit Delft](NL)
    The Kavli Nanoscience Institute at The California Institute of Technology
    The Kavli Institute for Bionano Science and Technology at Harvard University
    The Kavli Energy NanoSciences Institute at The University of California-Berkeley and The DOE’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

    Neuroscience

    The Kavli Institute for Brain Science at Columbia University
    The Kavli Institute for Brain & Mind at The University of California-San Diego
    The Kavli Institute for Neuroscience at Yale University
    The Kavli Institute for Systems Neuroscience at The Norwegian University of Science and Technology[Norges teknisk-naturvitenskapelige universitet](NO)
    The Kavli Neuroscience Discovery Institute at The Johns Hopkins University
    The Kavli Neural Systems Institute at The Rockefeller University
    The Kavli Institute for Fundamental Neuroscience at The University of California-San Francisco

    Theoretical physics

    Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics at The University of California-Santa Barbara
    The Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics China at The Chinese Academy of Sciences [中国科学院](CN)

     
  • richardmitnick 12:22 pm on December 9, 2021 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "Introducing The Kavli Centers for Ethics; Science; and the Public", , , Engaging the public in identifying and exploring ethical considerations and impacts born from scientific discovery., The Kavli Foundation, ,   

    From The Kavli Foundation : “Introducing The Kavli Centers for Ethics; Science; and the Public” 

    KavliFoundation

    From The Kavli Foundation

    December 09, 2021

    Scientific discoveries deepen our understanding of nature and ourselves, with the potential to transform our everyday lives, yet can raise ethical concerns or risks for society.

    Cutting-edge neuroscience, genetics, and artificial intelligence are a few examples that are driving the need to discuss: Who bears responsibility for broad ethical considerations of scientific discoveries? When is it optimal to consider implications and risks? How can the public be empowered to participate in these discussions?


    The Kavli Centers for Ethics, Science, and the Public.

    Two Kavli Centers for Ethics, Science, and the Public – at The University of California-Berkeley (US), and The University of Cambridge (UK) – are launching to engage the public in identifying and exploring ethical considerations and impacts born from scientific discovery.

    The Kavli Foundation’s vision for the centers is a paradigm shift to meet an as-yet unmet need within science: a proactive and sustained effort that is intentional in connecting the public, scientists, ethicists, social scientists, and science communicators early in the process of scientific discoveries to identify and discuss potential impacts on society.

    “We’re embarking on a democratization of the way we think, collaborate, and communicate about scientific discoveries and their ethical aspects – and ensuring the public is included,” says The Kavli Foundation President Cynthia Friend. “It’s long past due for this to happen.”

    Until now, there hasn’t been a sustained and proactive venture to address ethical implications born from scientific discovery that involves the public early and intentionally in the scientific process. And while there is increasing recognition within the scientific community that the public should be involved, mechanisms and infrastructure to do this are lacking. The public is too often left out of these important discussions, or they are brought in too late.

    “With the Kavli Centers for Ethics, Science, and the Public, we are taking necessary action to create the infrastructure that enables early and intentional public engagement in the ethical considerations born from scientific discoveries,” remarks The Kavli Foundation Director of Public Engagement, Brooke Smith.

    Two centers were selected for this new venture based on their vision, approach, and experience. While both are multi-faceted and complementary in their approaches working across disciplines in the sciences and humanities, each will have an initial focus that is unique.

    The Kavli Center for Ethics, Science, and the Public at UC Berkeley will reimagine how scientists are trained, beginning in the fields of neuroscience, genetics, and artificial intelligence. Leading the center is AI expert, Stuart Russell, along with Nobel-Prize Laureate Saul Perlmutter, who provided some of the first evidence that the expansion of the universe is accelerating; Nobel and Kavli Prize Laureate Jennifer Doudna, known for her discovery of the gene-editing tool CRISPR; theoretical and moral philosopher, Jay Wallace; bioethicist, Jodi Halpern; neuroscientist, Jack Gallant; and historian and writer, Elena Conis.

    “The impetus from The Kavli Foundation has helped to mobilize Berkeley’s unparalleled resources in the humanities, social sciences, natural sciences, and engineering to collaborate on addressing one of humanity’s most pressing problems: how to ensure that our rapidly advancing scientific and technological capabilities are directed towards the interests of humanity,” said Stuart Russell, who serves as the inaugural Director of the Kavli Center for Ethics, Science, and the Public at UC Berkeley.

    In a unique collaboration with Wellcome Connecting Science, the Kavli Center for Ethics, Science, and the Public at the University of Cambridge will be led by internationally recognized social scientist and genetic counsellor, Anna Middleton; supported by sociologist and bioethicist, Richard Milne; and journalist and broadcaster, Catherine Galloway; with creative industry expertise from broadcaster Vivienne Parry OBE, sociology of education expertise from Susan Robertson and genomics and public engagement expertise from Julian Rayner. Drawing on a network of experts in ethics and public engagement from the UK, China, Russia, India, and Japan, the new center will explore how ethical implications raised by science are tackled in different cultural contexts within the domains of genomics, big data, health research, and emerging technologies.

    “From the discovery of DNA’s structure to sequencing 20% of the world’s COVID virus and the development of the first artificial intelligence, Cambridge has been at the cutting edge of science for centuries,” remarked Anna Middleton, director for the Kavli Center for Ethics, Science, and the Public at the University of Cambridge. “Through collaboration with experts in popular culture we will find the evidence base to communicate complex ideas around the ethical issues raised by science so that all of us can share in decision making around the implications of science for society.”

    The idea for the Centers was sparked by The Kavli Foundation’s work and observations in science and society, including research at the 20 Kavli Institutes globally, where inspiring and transformative science is being done—ranging from decoding brain activity to fabricating artificial cells.

    “This is a long-overdue beginning of an important journey for the scientific community, and we look forward to the impact the Kavli Centers for Ethics, Science, and the Public will have on the future role of science within society,” says Friend.

    See the full article here .


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

    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.

    Stem Education Coalition

    The Kavli Foundation based in Oxnard, California is dedicated to the goals of advancing science for the benefit of humanity and promoting increased public understanding and support for scientists and their work.

    The Foundation’s mission is implemented through an international program of research institutes; professorships; and symposia in the fields of astrophysics; nanoscience; neuroscience; and theoretical physics as well as prizes in the fields of astrophysics; nanoscience; and neuroscience.

    The Kavli Foundation was established in December 2000 by its founder and benefactor Fred Kavli a Norwegian business leader and philanthropist who made his money by creating Kavlico- a company that made sensors; and by investing in real estate in southern California and Nevada. David Auston, a former president of Case Western Reserve University(US) and former Bell Labs scientist, was the first president of the Kavli Foundation and is largely credited with the vision of the scientific investments. Kavli died in 2013 and his foundation is currently actively involved in establishing research institutes at universities throughout the United States, in Europe, and in Asia.

    To date, the Kavli Foundation has made grants to establish Kavli Institutes on the campuses of 16 major universities. In addition to the Kavli Institutes, six Kavli professorships have been established: two at University of California, Santa Barbara(US), one each at University of California, Los Angeles (US), University of California, Irvine, Columbia University (US), Cornell University (US), and California Institute of Technology (US).

    The Kavli Institutes

    Astrophysics

    The Kavli Institute for Particle Astrophysics and Cosmology at Stanford University
    The Kavli Institute for Cosmological Physics, University of Chicago
    The Kavli Institute for Astrophysics and Space Research at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology
    The Kavli Institute for Astronomy and Astrophysics at Peking University
    The Kavli Institute for Cosmology at the University of Cambridge
    The Kavli Institute for the Physics and Mathematics of the Universe at the University of Tokyo

    Nanoscience

    The Kavli Institute for Nanoscale Science at Cornell University
    The Kavli Institute of Nanoscience at Delft University of Technology in the Netherlands
    The Kavli Nanoscience Institute at the California Institute of Technology
    The Kavli Institute for Bionano Science and Technology at Harvard University
    The Kavli Energy NanoSciences Institute at University of California, Berkeley and the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

    Neuroscience

    The Kavli Institute for Brain Science at Columbia University
    The Kavli Institute for Brain & Mind at the University of California, San Diego
    The Kavli Institute for Neuroscience at Yale University
    The Kavli Institute for Systems Neuroscience at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology
    The Kavli Neuroscience Discovery Institute at Johns Hopkins University
    The Kavli Neural Systems Institute at The Rockefeller University
    The Kavli Institute for Fundamental Neuroscience at the University of California, San Francisco

    Theoretical physics

    Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics at the University of California, Santa Barbara
    The Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics China at the Chinese Academy of Sciences

     
  • richardmitnick 1:35 pm on November 18, 2021 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "Wait-and-See and Go-and-Get-The Modes of Astrophysics", , , , Cosmic Background Radiation, , , The Kavli Foundation   

    From The Kavli Foundation : “Wait-and-See and Go-and-Get-The Modes of Astrophysics” 

    KavliFoundation

    From The Kavli Foundation

    Nov 10, 2021
    Adam Hadhazy

    Unlike many other scientific disciplines, astrophysics can count on a certain generosity shown by nature. Our planet Earth is constantly graced by light arriving from celestial entities, from as close as the moon, the sun, the planets, and other objects in the solar system, outward to the stars throughout our galaxy, and farther and farther out to billions of galaxies, and even all the way back to the universe’s oldest light, the afterglow of the Big Bang.

    CMB per European Space Agency(EU) Planck.

    Cosmic Background Radiation per ESA/Planck

    Heavier bits of particles than light, known as cosmic rays, as well as the lightest particles of all, neutrinos, also make it all the way to us from across great cosmic divides.

    Cosmic rays produced by high-energy astrophysics sources ASPERA collaboration AStroParticle ERAnet.

    Neutrinos. Credit: J-PARC T2K Neutrino Experiment.

    We’ve even figured out how to wrangle the ultra-subtle (by the time they reach us) ripples in the fabric of spacetime, dubbed gravitational waves, that are heaved out by cataclysmic events like black hole collisions.

    Artist’s by now iconic conception of two merging black holes similar to those detected by LIGO. Credit: Aurore Simonnet /Caltech MIT Advanced aLIGO(US)/Sonoma State University (US).

    _____________________________________________________________________________________
    LIGOVIRGOKAGRA

    Caltech /MIT Advanced aLigo

    Caltech/MIT Advanced aLigo detector installation Livingston, LA, USA.

    Caltech/MIT Advanced aLigo Hanford, WA, USA installation.

    VIRGO Gravitational Wave interferometer, near Pisa, Italy

    KAGRA Large-scale Cryogenic Gravitational Wave Telescope Project (JP)
    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    LIGO Virgo Kagra Masses in the Stellar Graveyard. Credit: Frank Elavsky and Aaron Geller at Northwestern University(US)

    Quite simply, all we need do to catch these information-loaded incoming signals is to look and listen with our telescopes; build it, so to speak, and they will come. Earth’s atmosphere does block out various forms of light and particles, so to catch everything the universe is throwing our way, we often send space telescopes aloft. Yet as well as this wait-and-see approach works, it is not enough for the business of planetary science, a field intimately tied into broader astrophysics. To really understand what’s in our solar system—and extrapolate from there to all other space rocks and phenomena in all other solar systems—we have to go and get a closer look. Not enough light or other conveyer of information can reach us from the surfaces of solar system bodies to tell us what, say, the rocks on the moon or Mars are fully made of, or what Pluto actually looks like. We’ve accordingly sent astronauts to the moon and rovers to Mars, and sent a probe, called New Horizons, on a nine-year-voyage to finally see Pluto’s face.

    National Aeronautics Space Agency(USA) New Horizons(US) spacecraft

    This modus operandi continues now with the Lucy spacecraft, which will let us get up close and personal with the most numerous set of solar system objects yet to be visited, called the Trojan asteroids.
    NASA depiction of Lucy Mission to Jupiter’s Trojans

    Alas, the laws of physics practically limit this active form of exploration, of going-and-getting, to just our solar system; even a probe somehow launched with the energetically unobtainable velocities in remote spitting distance of the speed of light would take decades, if not centuries to reach the nearest stars and exoplanets. We must therefore continue to hone our abilities to reap the harvest of the bounteous cosmic energy and matter that freely come to us right here on Earth.

    On the trail of inflation with the BICEP experiment

    BICEP 3 at the South Pole.

    Inflation is a highly compelling theory that addresses multiple issues in cosmology, explaining how our universe looks the way it does.

    _____________________________________________________________________________________
    Inflation

    4
    Alan Guth, from M.I.T., who first proposed cosmic inflation

    Lamda Cold Dark Matter Accerated Expansion of The universe http scinotions.com the-cosmic-inflation-suggests-the-existence-of-parallel-universes Alex Mittelmann, Coldcreation.

    Alan Guth’s notes:
    Alan Guth’s original notes on inflation
    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    Researchers at The Kavli Institute for Particle Astrophysics and Cosmology KIPAC at Stanford University (US) have been on the hunt for a predicted signal left by inflation on the oldest light in the universe, known as the cosmic microwave background, or CMB [above]. Inflation supposes that the universe underwent a titanic expansion in size a mere trillionth of a trillionth of a trillionth into its existence during the Big Bang. This dramatic event should have generated ripples in spacetime, known as gravitational waves, that in turn would have left signatures in the CMB. A telescope located at the South Pole is running the so-called BICEP experiment [above], searching for these signatures. In the latest set of results from BICEP, the researchers announced they did not find the eagerly sought signatures. But, in the process, the researchers have constrained the properties these hypothetical waves would have. It’s a null result, but such results are integral for knowing when something, has in fact, been discovered. The hunt will go on.

    Demolition derby in a nascent solar system

    The later stages of planetary formation are theorized to be violent periods, marked by cataclysmic collisions between worlds as solar systems settle down into a stable configuration. Our own moon is thought to be the product of such a collision between a nascent Earth and a Mars-sized body lost to history. Now researchers at The MIT Kavli Institute for Astrophysics and Space Research (US) think they have spotted this same kind of planetary demolition derby happening in an alien solar system. That system, designated HD 172555, had been known to have large and varied dust signatures, originally attributed to a major planetary impact or an asteroid belt. The plot has recently thickened. In association with that dusty debris, MKI researchers and colleagues have newly reported the signature of a carbon monoxide gas ring. The presence of all that gas and dust suggest that two bodies collided, with one or both possessing considerable atmospheres. It’s a remarkable new finding and once more shows that what happened here historically in our solar system is likely not unusual; whether that extends to the formation of life, though, remains a big question.

    From neutrinos to gravitational waves

    Takaaki Kajita has had a full scientific life. A Principal Investigator at the Kavli Institute for the Physics and Mathematics of the Universe since 2007, Kajita won a Nobel Prize Physics in 2015 for his breakthrough work showing that neutrinos spontaneously change a property called flavor, revealing that the squirrely subatomic particles do in fact have mass. Yet as a recent article in Physics World relates, despite his success with neutrinos, Kajita wanted to enter into a new field, and did so in 2008. He began working on the experiment that has become Japan’s first gravitational-wave hunting instrument, known as KAGRA [above]. Kajita, who now serves as the KAGRA project’s principal investigator, is looking forward to the detector carrying on its observing campaign next year.

    Neutron star mergers more of a goldmine than neutron star and black hole smashups.

    MKI researchers have provided new insights on the origins of natural chemical elements heavier than iron. The nuclear fusion in stars produces most of the elements lighter than iron, including familiar elements like carbon and oxygen. But nuclear fusion factories cannot get hot and compacted enough to go past iron. Researchers have thus worked out that the extreme conditions created when ultra-dense stellar remnants called neutron stars collide must be what leads to the formation or gold, platinum, and other heavy elements, generally up through uranium. Similarly extreme conditions also occur when neutron stars and even more compact objects, black holes, cataclysmically meet. An analysis of these two kinds of mergers, presented in a recent study, bears out that at least over the last 2.5 billion years of cosmic history, neutron star mergers have been the dominant way the universe has forged heavy elements. The novel findings will help in constraining how, where, and when heavy elements—which are rarer than lighter elements—appeared in and became distributed throughout the cosmos, and with certain abundances cropping up here on Earth.

    Lucy mission delving into the Solar System’s origins begins

    In mid-October, NASA launched an exciting new mission, dubbed Lucy [above]. The Lucy spacecraft will make humanity’s first-ever visit to the Trojan asteroids—enigmatic space rocks clustered in two bunches in front of and behind the planet Jupiter in its orbit.

    The inner Solar System, from the Sun to Jupiter. Also includes the asteroid belt (the white donut-shaped cloud), the Hildas (the orange “triangle” just inside the orbit of Jupiter), the Jupiter trojans (green), and the near-Earth asteroids. The group that leads Jupiter are called the “Greeks” and the trailing group are called the “Trojans” The image is looking down on the ecliptic plane as would have been seen on 1 September 2006 .

    The Trojans are pristine time capsules from the early solar system, preserving chemical evidence of the conditions when our local worlds took shape over four eons ago. The project scientist for the Lucy mission is Richard Binzel, who is an affiliated faculty member of MKI. He points out that materials visible on the asteroids Lucy will visit could date back 4.56 billion years, right to the very dawn of our solar system and older than any samples we could study from the moon or find on Earth. The Trojans could shed light on the origin of carbon-containing compounds, so-called organics, necessary for the rise of life. The spacecraft will reach its first of several Trojan targets in 2027.

    See the full article here .


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

    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.

    Stem Education Coalition

    The Kavli Foundation based in Oxnard, California is dedicated to the goals of advancing science for the benefit of humanity and promoting increased public understanding and support for scientists and their work.

    The Foundation’s mission is implemented through an international program of research institutes; professorships; and symposia in the fields of astrophysics; nanoscience; neuroscience; and theoretical physics as well as prizes in the fields of astrophysics; nanoscience; and neuroscience.

    The Kavli Foundation was established in December 2000 by its founder and benefactor Fred Kavli a Norwegian business leader and philanthropist who made his money by creating Kavlico- a company that made sensors; and by investing in real estate in southern California and Nevada. David Auston, a former president of Case Western Reserve University(US) and former Bell Labs scientist, was the first president of the Kavli Foundation and is largely credited with the vision of the scientific investments. Kavli died in 2013 and his foundation is currently actively involved in establishing research institutes at universities throughout the United States, in Europe, and in Asia.

    To date, the Kavli Foundation has made grants to establish Kavli Institutes on the campuses of 16 major universities. In addition to the Kavli Institutes, six Kavli professorships have been established: two at University of California, Santa Barbara(US), one each at University of California, Los Angeles (US), University of California, Irvine, Columbia University (US), Cornell University (US), and California Institute of Technology (US).

    The Kavli Institutes

    Astrophysics

    The Kavli Institute for Particle Astrophysics and Cosmology at Stanford University
    The Kavli Institute for Cosmological Physics, University of Chicago
    The Kavli Institute for Astrophysics and Space Research at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology
    The Kavli Institute for Astronomy and Astrophysics at Peking University
    The Kavli Institute for Cosmology at the University of Cambridge
    The Kavli Institute for the Physics and Mathematics of the Universe at the University of Tokyo

    Nanoscience

    The Kavli Institute for Nanoscale Science at Cornell University
    The Kavli Institute of Nanoscience at Delft University of Technology in the Netherlands
    The Kavli Nanoscience Institute at the California Institute of Technology
    The Kavli Institute for Bionano Science and Technology at Harvard University
    The Kavli Energy NanoSciences Institute at University of California, Berkeley and the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

    Neuroscience

    The Kavli Institute for Brain Science at Columbia University
    The Kavli Institute for Brain & Mind at the University of California, San Diego
    The Kavli Institute for Neuroscience at Yale University
    The Kavli Institute for Systems Neuroscience at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology
    The Kavli Neuroscience Discovery Institute at Johns Hopkins University
    The Kavli Neural Systems Institute at The Rockefeller University
    The Kavli Institute for Fundamental Neuroscience at the University of California, San Francisco

    Theoretical physics

    Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics at the University of California, Santa Barbara
    The Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics China at the Chinese Academy of Sciences

     
  • richardmitnick 12:52 pm on November 18, 2021 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "Tapping the Quantum Power of Large Objects", , Gröblacher's goal is to tap the quantum properties of what he calls “mechanical objects” to accomplish such practical tasks as networking quantum computers., Last year Gröblacher demonstrated a quantum memory comprised of billions of atoms., Optomechanics: how light interacts with mechanical systems., , , Quantum resonators, Simon Gröblacheris a quantum physicist and member of The Kavli Institute of Nanoscience at Delft University of Technology (NL), The Kavli Foundation   

    From The Kavli Foundation : “Tapping the Quantum Power of Large Objects” 

    KavliFoundation

    From The Kavli Foundation

    Oct 22, 2021
    Alan S. Brown

    1
    Simon Gröblacher stands in front of the quantum modem he developed. Photo by Rebekka Mell.

    When scientists talk quantum mechanics, the discussion usually centers around individual subatomic entities like electrons, photons, bosons, and the like. The list rarely includes systems of billions of atoms—objects large enough to view under a good microscope.

    Yet that is exactly the type of system that intrigues Simon Gröblacher, a quantum physicist and member of The Kavli Institute of Nanoscience at Delft University of Technology (NL). His goal is to tap the quantum properties of what he calls “mechanical objects” to accomplish such practical tasks as networking quantum computers.

    Gröblacher is well on his way to meeting that challenge. Last year, he demonstrated a quantum memory comprised of billions of atoms. It was able to interact with a single particle of light, a photon, take on its quantum state, and retain that state for several milliseconds. This may not sound like a long time, but quantum states typically collapse in nanoseconds or less, even in systems chilled to near absolute zero to slow the transfer of energy that makes them vanish.

    This memory system will form the heart of a quantum repeater, a device that could store and resend quantum states (and the information they contain) before they wink out of existence. Repeaters could play a vital role in linking together thousands of quantum computers to tackle difficult mathematical problems.

    This year, Gröblacher took another giant step towards that vision. He created a device that converts the quantum state of one type of photon into the quantum state of another—without either photon coming into contact with the other.

    It does that by using his mechanical system as a go-between. By controlling the device’s structure, Gröblacher can coax the system to generate photons whose wavelengths allow them to rush along existing optical telecommunications networks without losing the information they hold.

    On the Edge

    Gröblacher never intended to study quantum objects. “I know very few physicists who said when they were young, ‘I want to be a physicist,’” he said. “After high school, I was completely undecided. I tried astronomy, but I couldn’t personally measure things or grasp them because they were so far away.”

    Paradoxically, his practical nature led him to quantum physics, the most theoretical of sciences: “I went from the largest things in the universe to the smallest,” he said. “Even as a young student in a small group of researchers, I found I could pose a question that was very profound, put together an optics experiment, and actually learn something new about quantum physics. It was very satisfying and limited only by my imagination.”

    Gröblacher earned his Ph.D. at The University of Vienna [Universität Wien] (AT), followed by a three-year post-doctoral at The California Institute of Technology (US) with Oskar Painter, a member of the Kavli Nanoscience Institute. There, he continued to study optomechanics, how light interacts with mechanical systems. He joined Delft in 2014, where he continued to probe the quantum nature of larger and larger objects.

    “Supposedly, anything can be described by quantum theory,” Gröblacher said. “Even many-body objects made up of billions of atoms should behave according to the rules of quantum physics. By linking with these large physical objects, we’re trying to push the limits of the science. We want to see how massive we can make an object and still observe quantum effects. According to quantum theory, there is no limit to size. Yet, in the reality of classic physics, that is not the case. So, what’s going on? Where’s the transition? How does it happen?”

    This research places Gröblacher on the edge of quantum physics research. Yet the answers he discovers could yield practical benefits. Photons, often the object of quantum research, are hard to manipulate and couple with other types of systems. Large objects, on the other hand, can interact with other quantum systems as well as classical systems.

    “If you can control them well enough, you could think about bridging different types of quantum systems that would ordinarily not talk to each other,” he said.

    Resonators

    Gröblacher’s resonators allow him to do just that, though it took a series of advances to get there. To understand them, consider a classical mechanical resonator. It is a system that oscillates at many frequencies, but some more strongly than others. A church bell is a good example, and so is a leaf quivering in the wind.

    Quantum resonators are different. In the quantum world, properties are discrete; that is, they only exist in certain, specific energy states. There is no continuous path from one state to another, so they do not vibrate at all frequencies. Instead, energy jumps from one energy state to the next, as if it were crossing a river by jumping from stone to stone.

    Like its conventional counterpart, a quantum resonator starts with many energy states. Reduce its temperature, however, and it will have less energy available to jump from state to state. As temperature approaches absolute zero, it will sink to its lowest possible energy state.

    “At that point, the mathematical description of the billions of atoms in this resonator is exactly the same as for a single photon or an electron,” Gröblacher said. “Those billions of atoms can now be in a quantum state, like a superposition state, which is like having two energy states at the same time.”

    This is where the magic happens. Since those billions of atoms are now behaving like a single quantum object, they can now interact with a photon of light on a quantum level. This entangles the two, so that they share the same quantum state even when they are physically separated.

    Gröblacher is using the resonator for experiments involving quantum mechanical excitations, discrete packets of vibrational energy that make up an oscillation. His ultimate goal is to enable these excitations to travel across a waveguide, much the way electrons travel along a circuit in a semiconductor chip.

    The resonator lies at the heart of the quantum memory system Gröblacher devised to store quantum states (which we can think of as information) for prolonged periods of time. In the wild, quantum states are fragile and degrade in far less than a millionth of a second. To use their information, researchers have found ways to preserve those quantum states for microseconds and, more recently, milliseconds.

    Gröblacher believes his high-quality resonator structures could preserve those states for up to one to two seconds, an eternity in quantum mechanics, and to read out the data he has stored. This is long enough to use resonator memory to build a quantum repeater capable of storing and resending quantum information along a network.

    Connecting

    This yields a device that can “teleport,” or transport, the quantum state (or information) of a photon that has no mass onto a massive mechanical system made of billions of atoms, where he can store it and then read it out again.

    To build a repeater, however, Gröblacher must be able to retransmit the quantum state he has stored in his memory. This can be done optically. Gröblacher, however, is more excited by his ability to use the resonator memory to convert the quantum state of one type of photon into that of another type of photon.

    In one case, a microwave photon creates an entangled state with the resonator. The resonator then emits an optical photon that carries that same state as the original microwave photon. The system can also work the other way, starting with an optical photon and producing a microwave photon.

    Gröblacher founded a company, QphoX, to transform that technology into what he calls the world’s first quantum modem to link quantum computers to one another. This would enable the creation of networks linking many thousands or tens of thousands of quantum computers, vastly expanding the type of complex problems they could solve.

    Like a conventional modem, Gröblacher’s device will be bidirectional, so each networked computer can send and receive quantum data from any other computer. While the modem will operate near absolute zero, the photons it generates will share data over conventional, room-temperature optical networks. This eliminates the need for a cryochilled network while keeping costs manageable.

    This past May, QphoX received a €2 million initial investment to commercialize the modem.

    It may take several years to create a system that is reliable and cost-effective for commercial use. In the meantime, Gröblacher plans to stay busy in his lab, asking fundamental questions about the quantum universe and doing experiments to answer them.

    See the full article here .


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

    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.

    Stem Education Coalition

    The Kavli Foundation based in Oxnard, California is dedicated to the goals of advancing science for the benefit of humanity and promoting increased public understanding and support for scientists and their work.

    The Foundation’s mission is implemented through an international program of research institutes; professorships; and symposia in the fields of astrophysics; nanoscience; neuroscience; and theoretical physics as well as prizes in the fields of astrophysics; nanoscience; and neuroscience.

    The Kavli Foundation was established in December 2000 by its founder and benefactor Fred Kavli a Norwegian business leader and philanthropist who made his money by creating Kavlico- a company that made sensors; and by investing in real estate in southern California and Nevada. David Auston, a former president of Case Western Reserve University(US) and former Bell Labs scientist, was the first president of the Kavli Foundation and is largely credited with the vision of the scientific investments. Kavli died in 2013 and his foundation is currently actively involved in establishing research institutes at universities throughout the United States, in Europe, and in Asia.

    To date, the Kavli Foundation has made grants to establish Kavli Institutes on the campuses of 16 major universities. In addition to the Kavli Institutes, six Kavli professorships have been established: two at University of California, Santa Barbara(US), one each at University of California, Los Angeles (US), University of California, Irvine, Columbia University (US), Cornell University (US), and California Institute of Technology (US).

    The Kavli Institutes

    Astrophysics

    The Kavli Institute for Particle Astrophysics and Cosmology at Stanford University
    The Kavli Institute for Cosmological Physics, University of Chicago
    The Kavli Institute for Astrophysics and Space Research at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology
    The Kavli Institute for Astronomy and Astrophysics at Peking University
    The Kavli Institute for Cosmology at the University of Cambridge
    The Kavli Institute for the Physics and Mathematics of the Universe at the University of Tokyo

    Nanoscience

    The Kavli Institute for Nanoscale Science at Cornell University
    The Kavli Institute of Nanoscience at Delft University of Technology in the Netherlands
    The Kavli Nanoscience Institute at the California Institute of Technology
    The Kavli Institute for Bionano Science and Technology at Harvard University
    The Kavli Energy NanoSciences Institute at University of California, Berkeley and the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

    Neuroscience

    The Kavli Institute for Brain Science at Columbia University
    The Kavli Institute for Brain & Mind at the University of California, San Diego
    The Kavli Institute for Neuroscience at Yale University
    The Kavli Institute for Systems Neuroscience at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology
    The Kavli Neuroscience Discovery Institute at Johns Hopkins University
    The Kavli Neural Systems Institute at The Rockefeller University
    The Kavli Institute for Fundamental Neuroscience at the University of California, San Francisco

    Theoretical physics

    Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics at the University of California, Santa Barbara
    The Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics China at the Chinese Academy of Sciences

     
  • richardmitnick 8:47 am on April 22, 2021 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "Materials for Quantum", , , , , The Kavli Foundation   

    From The Kavli Foundation : “Materials for Quantum” 

    KavliFoundation

    From The Kavli Foundation

    1
    Credit: KIT Karlsruhe Institute of Technology

    Apr 20, 2021
    David Steuerman

    3
    Five quantum computing hardware platforms.

    From top left: Optical image of an IBM superconducting qubit processor (inset: cartoon of a Josephson junction); SEM image of gate-defined semiconductor quantum dots (inset: cartoon depicting the confining potential); ultraviolet photoluminescence image showing emission from color centers in diamond (inset: atomistic model of defects); picture of a surface-electrode ion trap (inset: cartoon of ions confined above the surface); false-colored SEM image of a hybrid semiconductor/superconductor [inset: cartoon of an epitaxial superconducting Al shell (blue) on a faceted semiconducting InAs nanowire (orange)].
    “IBM IMAGE, CC BY-ND 2.0; SEM IMAGE COURTESY OF S. NEYENS AND M. A. ERIKSSON; PHOTOLUMINESCENCE IMAGE COURTESY OF N. P. DE LEON; FALSE-COLORED SEM IMAGE COURTESY OF C. MARCUS, P. KROGSTRUP, AND D. RAZMADZE”

    The Kavli Foundation’s interest in quantum information science and engineering is rooted in the fact this it touches on all our focus disciplines. Quantum computers are fabricated by using nanoscience principles and techniques. Quantum sensors and networks may drive the future of both astrophysical observations and brain imaging, while quantum is simply fundamental to many areas of studies within theoretical physics. It is one of the most exciting areas of science that will undoubtedly have major impacts on our society.

    The recent pace of scientific and engineering progress is nothing short of remarkable. In just the last decade quantum computers have evolved from complex artisanal laboratory experiments to complete cloud-accessible computing systems open to anyone and developed by some of the most innovative technology companies. It has been astonishing to see such rapid progress as a result of incredibly dedicated and creative researchers who are continually refining these systems. These performance improvements have come from a variety of contributors including physicists designing new qubits and methods to interact with them, computer scientists developing novel algorithms and architectures, software engineers creating languages and programs to support these machines, and electrical engineers developing new systems to control complex instruments just to name a few. An extensive ecosystem is blossoming to realize the spectacular capabilities of a large-scale quantum computer capable of solving important but select computational problems intractable for even the largest classical high-performance computers. Suspiciously under-emphasized from this group, though, are the materials scientists who could augment and transform this entire endeavor with improved or entirely new materials on which to base quantum computing platforms.

    For the last few years, The Kavli Foundation has been tracking scientific breakthroughs and their commensurate interest and investment from major funders globally. And while we have seen a great deal of focus on and support for existing quantum computing systems and bringing more computer scientists into the fold, there remains a lack of emphasis on engaging the materials science community. From my interactions with hundreds of scientists and engineers, two things became very clear; (1) materials scientists likely hold the key to unlocking the quantum computing revolution and (2) there are not enough of them exploring new materials or studying the limitations and severe constraints of the dominant quantum computing platforms of today.

    After many months of discussion and planning, it took nearly one year for 10 contributors from three continents, with various backgrounds, who are passionate about the importance of materials science, to write a review addressing the materials challenges across the most popular quantum computing platforms. We hope this manuscript, published in Science, highlights some of the thematically common problems that plague many of the existing quantum computing hardware platforms, serves as a renewed invitation to the materials science community, and encourages funders and other organizations to provide the necessary support for the ensuing fundamental materials research that is so needed and will have transformational impact.


    In the quantum future we’ll identify new drugs to fight disease, design better materials for energy harvesting, optimize the logistics that bring our world closer together, and find almost any needle in a digital haystack. That future is within our grasp, we just need a little help from our materials science friends.

    See the full article here .


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

    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.

    Stem Education Coalition

    The Kavli Foundation based in Oxnard, California is dedicated to the goals of advancing science for the benefit of humanity and promoting increased public understanding and support for scientists and their work.

    The Foundation’s mission is implemented through an international program of research institutes; professorships; and symposia in the fields of astrophysics; nanoscience; neuroscience; and theoretical physics as well as prizes in the fields of astrophysics; nanoscience; and neuroscience.

    The Kavli Foundation was established in December 2000 by its founder and benefactor Fred Kavli a Norwegian business leader and philanthropist who made his money by creating Kavlico- a company that made sensors; and by investing in real estate in southern California and Nevada. David Auston, a former president of Case Western Reserve University(US) and former Bell Labs scientist, was the first president of the Kavli Foundation and is largely credited with the vision of the scientific investments. Kavli died in 2013 and his foundation is currently actively involved in establishing research institutes at universities throughout the United States, in Europe, and in Asia.

    To date, the Kavli Foundation has made grants to establish Kavli Institutes on the campuses of 16 major universities. In addition to the Kavli Institutes, six Kavli professorships have been established: two at University of California, Santa Barbara(US), one each at University of California, Los Angeles (US), University of California, Irvine, Columbia University (US), Cornell University (US), and California Institute of Technology (US).

    The Kavli Institutes

    Astrophysics

    The Kavli Institute for Particle Astrophysics and Cosmology at Stanford University
    The Kavli Institute for Cosmological Physics, University of Chicago
    The Kavli Institute for Astrophysics and Space Research at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology
    The Kavli Institute for Astronomy and Astrophysics at Peking University
    The Kavli Institute for Cosmology at the University of Cambridge
    The Kavli Institute for the Physics and Mathematics of the Universe at the University of Tokyo

    Nanoscience

    The Kavli Institute for Nanoscale Science at Cornell University
    The Kavli Institute of Nanoscience at Delft University of Technology in the Netherlands
    The Kavli Nanoscience Institute at the California Institute of Technology
    The Kavli Institute for Bionano Science and Technology at Harvard University
    The Kavli Energy NanoSciences Institute at University of California, Berkeley and the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

    Neuroscience

    The Kavli Institute for Brain Science at Columbia University
    The Kavli Institute for Brain & Mind at the University of California, San Diego
    The Kavli Institute for Neuroscience at Yale University
    The Kavli Institute for Systems Neuroscience at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology
    The Kavli Neuroscience Discovery Institute at Johns Hopkins University
    The Kavli Neural Systems Institute at The Rockefeller University
    The Kavli Institute for Fundamental Neuroscience at the University of California, San Francisco

    Theoretical physics

    Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics at the University of California, Santa Barbara
    The Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics China at the Chinese Academy of Sciences

     
  • richardmitnick 12:32 pm on February 25, 2021 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "Pulsars- pulsing with astrophysics", A subset of these neutron stars soldier on as even wilder objects dubbed pulsars., , , , , , , In a universe chock-full of bizarre objects neutron stars rank near the top of the list., , The Kavli Foundation, The pulsar known as SXP 1062   

    From The Kavli Foundation: “Pulsars- pulsing with astrophysics” 

    KavliFoundation

    From The Kavli Foundation

    1
    In this composite image, X-rays from Chandra and XMM-Newton have been colored blue and optical data from the NOIRLab Cerro Tololo Inter-American Observatory in Chile are colored red and green. The pulsar known as SXP 1062, is the bright white source located on the right-hand side of the image in the middle of the diffuse blue emission inside a red shell. The diffuse X-rays and optical shell are both evidence of a supernova remnant surrounding the pulsar. The optical data also displays spectacular formations of gas and dust in a star-forming region on the left side of the image. Image Credit: NASA/CXC/Univ.of Potsdam/L. Oskinova et al.

    NASA Chandra X-ray Space Telescope.

    ESA/XMM Newton X-ray telescope (EU).

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

    In a universe chock-full of bizarre objects neutron stars rank near the top of the list. Although merely the size of a city, pulsars still pack in about one-and-a-half times the mass of our entire Sun.

    Dame Susan Jocelyn Bell Burnell, discovered pulsars with radio astronomy. Jocelyn Bell at the Mullard Radio Astronomy Observatory, Cambridge University, taken for the Daily Herald newspaper in 1968. Denied the Nobel.

    Neutron stars manage to pull off this feat because their extreme gravity crushes atoms so tightly that the atoms’ protons and electrons fuse together, forming a hyperdense object composed almost entirely of neutrons (hence the moniker). Even the origin of neutron stars is intense—they’re forged when colossal stars cataclysmically explode as supernovae and the dying monster star’s pure iron core collapses in on itself.

    For reasons not well-understood, a subset of these neutron stars soldier on as even wilder objects dubbed pulsars. These are neutron stars that spin anywhere from once every few seconds to many hundreds of times per second, sending beams of radiation sweeping through the cosmos like hyper lighthouses.

    Measuring the characteristics of those beams is one of the main ways researchers are keying in on how neutron stars and pulsars alike work, in turn helping probe the boundaries of fundamental physics.

    “Pulsar emissions are the primary signature of neutron stars, and neutron stars represent the most extreme matter in the observable universe,” says Roger Romani, a professor of physics at Stanford University(US) and a member of the Kavli Institute for Particle Astrophysics and Cosmology (KIPAC).

    Romani and colleagues are keenly interested in the dividing line between neutron stars and the only objects made of even denser material, namely stellar black holes. (And which are not part of the “observable” universe, seeing as they do not emit light.) Stellar black holes form the same way as neutron stars, when ginormous stars go boom, though in the former’s case, the leftover stellar cinder compacts so tightly that its gravity traps light, and the object goes “dark.”

    The dividing line is one of mass, where the most massive stars yield the most massive cores that, at some threshold, generate the gravity necessary to progress past neutron-starhood and into black holiness. (Forgive the punnery.) Researchers want to better understand this boundary and reap the insights it will provide into how matter behaves in conditions completely unreplicable on Earth.

    “I’ve been chasing down where the neutron star – black hole boundary is,” says Romani. “How massive can a neutron star get before it disappears, collapsing into a black hole?”

    Pulsars are in fact paving the way to this understanding, specifically a kind of pulsar with the ominous nickname “black widow.” These are pulsars that steadily destroy companion stars with energetic outflows, oftentimes gravitationally slurping up some of the scattered matter from their victims. (The nickname derives from how female black widow spiders tend to eat their male partners, an act that gave the spiders their evocative appellation in the first place.) The rate of pulses from some black widow pulsars suggest they’ve have gobbled up so much matter that they’re at the “brink of collapse,” Romani says, and could transition into being black holes.

    Other important insights into neutron star physics will come via gravitational wave astronomy. It’s a field that sprung to life just six years ago with the announcement of the first-ever direct detection of gravitational waves by the LIGO observatory (led in part by members of the Kavli Institute for Astrophysics and Space Research at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology).

    Kavli MIT Institute For Astrophysics and Space Research.



    Caltech/MIT Advanced aLigo Hanford, WA, USA installation


    Caltech/MIT Advanced aLigo detector installation Livingston, LA, USA

    Cornell SXS, the Simulating eXtreme Spacetimes (SXS) project


    Gravitational waves. Credit: MPI for Gravitational Physics/W.Benger-Zib

    ESA/eLISA the future of gravitational wave research

    As LIGO and its ilk capture more events in the years ahead spawned by the energetic mergers of neutron stars, as well as black holes and neutron stars, astrophysicists will gain a vital new dataset. “Gravitational wave signatures can also help once we get a large sample of neutron star-containing mergers,” Romani says.

    Also helpful will be pulsar pulses not of the usual radio-wave variety measured in abundance since the discovery of pulsars in 1967. “For the radio emission, we are flooded in data,” says Romani. “But most of it is ‘weather’ and it is hard to see how we will cut through this to probe the underlying physics.”

    Instead, harder-to-corral, higher-energy light, such as gamma rays and x-rays, is now broadening our understanding of the mechanisms driving pulsars.

    “For the extreme physics questions, additional measurements of neutron star masses, radii, and surface emissions, especially in the x-ray band, offer good hope of near-future progress,” says Romani.

    The KIPAC researcher expects this wealth of data will help answer one of the biggest outstanding mystery about pulsars—how the heck do they generate their telltale radio pulses, anyway? “Some plausible models have been proposed,” Romani says. “But there is as yet no generally accepted picture.”

    It goes to show that while neutron stars and pulsars are pushing astrophysics into new frontiers, some age-old, basic questions about these extraordinary objects still need answering.

    See the full article here .


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

    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.

    Stem Education Coalition

    The Kavli Foundation, based in Oxnard, California, is dedicated to the goals of advancing science for the benefit of humanity and promoting increased public understanding and support for scientists and their work.

    The Foundation’s mission is implemented through an international program of research institutes, professorships, and symposia in the fields of astrophysics, nanoscience, neuroscience, and theoretical physics as well as prizes in the fields of astrophysics, nanoscience, and neuroscience.

    The Kavli Foundation, based in Los Angeles, California, is a foundation that supports the advancement of science and the increase of public understanding and support for scientists and their work.

    The Kavli Foundation was established in December 2000 by its founder and benefactor, Fred Kavli, a Norwegian business leader and philanthropist, who made his money by creating Kavlico, a company that made sensors, and by investing in real estate in southern California and Nevada. David Auston, a former president of Case Western Reserve University and former Bell Labs scientist, was the first president of the Kavli Foundation and is largely credited with the vision of the scientific investments. Kavli died in 2013, and his foundation is currently actively involved in establishing research institutes at universities throughout the United States, in Europe, and in Asia.

    To date, the Kavli Foundation has made grants to establish Kavli Institutes on the campuses of 16 major universities. In addition to the Kavli Institutes, six Kavli professorships have been established: two at University of California, Santa Barbara, one each at University of California, Los Angeles, University of California, Irvine, Columbia University, Cornell University, and California Institute of Technology.

     
  • richardmitnick 1:14 pm on November 23, 2020 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "Transforming astrophysics with a mighty new telescope", , , , , The Kavli Foundation, The mirrors are being constructed by the University of Arizona's Steward Observatory Richard F. Caris Mirror Lab.,   

    From The Kavli Foundation: “Transforming astrophysics with a mighty new telescope” 

    KavliFoundation

    From The Kavli Foundation

    10/30/2020
    Adam Hadhazy

    GMT

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

    The Giant Magellan Telescope (GMT), an exciting next-generation observatory, recently got a big boost. In September, the National Science Foundation announced a grant of $17.5 million, the first major tranche of funds for GMT’s continued development.

    The telescope is intended to be “transformative,” according to its backers, when it begins gazing at the skies circa 2029. The facility will have a spatial resolution that is ten times sharper than the Hubble Space Telescope. Resolution at that level will turn blurry, celestial sketches into detailed, crisp pictures brimming with astrophysical information.

    “This resolution will yield transformative discoveries across all fields of astronomy and astrophysics, from studies of the faintest galaxies across the cosmos at the time of first light, through to the atmospheres of exoplanets around the nearest stars, and all scales and objects in between,” says Michael Gladders, an assistant professor of astronomy and astrophysics at the University of Chicago, a senior member of the Kavli Institute for Cosmological Physics (KICP), and part of the GMT science committee.

    To pull off this scientific feat, though, GMT will require some significant development of its optical- and infrared-observing technologies. The telescope is slated to be built at the Las Campanas Observatory in Chile which, given the local elevation (2500 meters or 8200 feet) and ultra-low humidity, features some of the clearest skies on Earth.

    Carnegie Las Campanas Observatory in the southern Atacama Desert of Chile in the Atacama Region approximately 100 kilometres (62 mi) northeast of the city of La Serena,near the southern end and over 2,500 m (8,200 ft) high.

    To take advantage of those skies and exceed the capabilities of today’s instrument, designers will have to engineer GMT to exquisitely coordinate the movements of its seven, massive, 8.4 meter- (27-foot-) diameter mirrors. The mirror movement is an integral part of what is known as an adaptive optics system. Such systems compensate for the inevitable twinkling of stars—an effect caused by Earth’s atmosphere—by measuring the distortion and then making tiny bends to the flexible mirrors on the fly. In GMT’s case, those changes will need to happen at the astonishing, yet technically feasible rate of 1,000 times per second.

    The most important advance of the GMT is that the way the mirrors are built there will be less “stiching” required for an achievement of usable images. This is not a feature included in the E-ELT or the TMT.

    Adaptive optics systems have been added onto many of the world’s largest ground-based telescopes and worked spectacularly. Yet in GMT’s case, the enhancement will not be an enhancement, but built-in from the start, leveraging the considerable know-how that has accumulated regarding the technology since its first deployments about three decades ago. “The GMT will be one of the first telescope designed from the beginning to use adaptive optics,” notes Gladders.

    GMT will be a big deal, literally and figuratively, for the astronomical community. For Gladders, his work on galaxy formation will be newly and deeply informed by the telescope’s observations, especially when paired with the natural magnifying power of so-called gravitational lenses. These phenomena are typically foreground galaxy clusters whose immense gravity warps and increase the brightness of distant, ordinarily faint, background objects. GMT plus gravitational lensing could this bring previously inaccessibly far stars into clear view.

    Gravitational Lensing

    Gravitational Lensing NASA/ESA.

    “I am most excited to couple the sharpest images from the GMT with the power of strong gravitational lensing to study individual star clusters, and even individual stars, in distant galaxies,” says Gladders. “Stars and star-clusters are the brushstrokes that paint in the picture of galaxy formation and evolution across cosmic time, and GMT will allow us to see galaxies across the universe at this key level of detail.”

    It’s not just the ultra-distant that will be brought close, so to speak, by GMT. Many researchers are keen on how GMT will enable investigations of comparatively nearby objects, such as exoplanets. Although more than four thousand exoplanets have been found in the last quarter-century, to date, only a smidgen have been even minimally characterized. Telescopes operating at their limits of detection these days can tell us a bit about exoplanets’ atmospheres and what sorts of gases they contain. Next-generation instruments will be ultimately needed to say much more, though, beyond these basics.

    The most tantalizing of the sought-after atmospheric gas signatures are those that cannot have been plausibly produced by geophysical processes, and thus are deemed far more likely to be a result of—as wild as it sounds—alien biological activity. Finding such biosignatures or biomarkers would certainly qualify as “transformative.”

    “I am excited to see what the GMT can teach us about exoplanets, their atmospheres and potentially biomarkers,” Gladders says, “as we transition from discovery to detailed study of the many exoplanets systems being discovered now.”
    ________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
    The telescope will use seven of the world’s largest mirrors as primary mirror segments, each 8.417 m (27.61 ft) in diameter. These segments will then be arranged with one mirror in the center and the other six arranged symmetrically around it. The challenge is that the outer six mirror segments will be off-axis, and although identical to each other, will not be individually radially symmetrical, necessitating a modification of the usual polishing and testing procedures.

    The mirrors are being constructed by the University of Arizona’s Steward Observatory Richard F. Caris Mirror Lab.

    U Arizona mirror lab-Where else in the world can you find an astronomical observatory mirror lab under a football stadium?

    The casting of the first mirror, in a rotating furnace, was completed on November 3, 2005, but the grinding and polishing were still going on 6½ years later when the second mirror was cast, on 14 January 2012. A third segment was cast in August 2013, and the fourth in September 2015. The casting of each mirror uses 20 tons of E6 borosilicate glass from the Ohara Corporation of Japan and takes about 12–13 weeks. After being cast, they need to cool for about six months.

    Polishing of the first mirror was completed in November 2012. As this was an off-axis segment, a wide array of new optical tests and laboratory infrastructure had to be developed to polish the mirror.

    The intention is to build seven identical off-axis mirrors, so that a spare is available to substitute for a segment being recoated, a 1–2 week (per segment) process required every 1–2 years. While the complete telescope will use seven mirrors, it is planned to begin operation with four mirrors.

    The primary mirror array as a whole will have a focal ratio (focal length divided by diameter) of f/0.71. For an individual segment – being one third that diameter – this results in a focal ratio of f/2.14. The overall focal ratio of the complete telescope will be f/8 and the optical prescription is an aplanatic Gregorian telescope. Like all modern large telescopes it will make use of adaptive optics.

    Scientists expect very high quality images due to the very large aperture and advanced adaptive optics. Image resolution should exceed that of the Hubble Space Telescope.

    See the full article here .


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

    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.

    Stem Education Coalition

    The Kavli Foundation, based in Oxnard, California, is dedicated to the goals of advancing science for the benefit of humanity and promoting increased public understanding and support for scientists and their work.

    The Foundation’s mission is implemented through an international program of research institutes, professorships, and symposia in the fields of astrophysics, nanoscience, neuroscience, and theoretical physics as well as prizes in the fields of astrophysics, nanoscience, and neuroscience.

     
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