Most weeks during the semester, we host a scholar for a one-day visit. The visit culminates with a public talk on a topic of contemporary physics or astronomy. Students are welcome to these talks, and seniors are required to attend at least nine over the course of a year. Near the end of each semester, honors thesis students give public lectures on their work. We gather before the talks for tea, coffee, and cookies at 4:00, Ground Lobby of Science Center followed by the talk at 4:15 pm in A011.
Our Astronomy program is part of the Five College Astronomy Department, which hosts its own colloquium series Thursdays at 3:45 pm at UMass in LGRT 1033.
Tue, Sep 25, 2018
Large area galaxy surveys allow us to measure fundamental properties of the Universe. The Dark Energy Survey (DES) is one such experiment that covers an eighth of the sky, and observes back to a time when the Universe was only half its age. Galaxy clusters have the potential to be the most powerful probe of cosmological parameters, assuming we can account for the various systematics affecting observations of these objects. In this talk, I will discuss measurements of cluster masses using gravitational weak lensing, and preview constraints on the growth of structure and matter density fraction of our Universe made with galaxy clusters.... More »
Tue, Oct 2, 2018
Assistant Professor of Physics Laura Newburgh, Yale University: "New Probes of Old Structure: Cosmology with 21cm Intensity Mapping and the Cosmic Microwave Background "
Current cosmological measurements have left us with deep questions about our Universe: What caused the expansion of the Universe at the earliest times? How did structure form? What is Dark Energy and does it evolve with time? New experiments like CHIME, HIRAX, and ACTPol are poised to address these questions through 3-dimensional maps of structure and measurements of the polarized Cosmic Microwave Background. In this talk, I will describe how we will use 21cm intensity measurements from CHIME and HIRAX to place sensitive constraints on Dark Energy between redshifts 0.8 -- 2.5, a poorly probed era corresponding to when Dark Energy began to... More »
Tue, Oct 16, 2018
Tue, Oct 23, 2018
Tue, Oct 30, 2018
Tue, Nov 6, 2018
Tue, Nov 13, 2018
Tue, Nov 27, 2018
Tue, Dec 4, 2018
Tue, Jan 29, 2019
Information Session for Junior Physics & Astronomy majors beginning at 4:30 p.m. in the Student Lounge. This will be an informational meeting for all juniors where we will discuss how to go about applying to graduate school and options and procedures for honors thesis projects. Pizza will be served.