Seminars and Colloquia

Unless otherwise noted, all physics seminars and colloquia are held on Tuesdays from 4:45 to 6:00 pm, in Lecture Room 3 of Merrill Science Center. Tea and snacks will be served before seminars at 4:15 in 204 Merrill. If you would like to be mailed seminar announcements, please send an email to Physics.

Contact colloquium organizer Larry Hunter with any questions about colloquia.

Tue, Sep 12, 2017

Welcome Back Pizza Party

Students interested in learning more about and/or declaring a Physics & Astronomy Major are invited to attend this information session. During this session you will learn about the requirements for the Major as well as opportunities available for students in Physics & Astronomy department. Freshmen and Transfer students are encouraged to attend! Meet department faculty, staff and majors!

Tue, Sep 19, 2017

Weekly Physics & Astronomy Seminar: TBA

Unless otherwise noted, all physics seminars and colloquium are held on Tuesdays from 4:45 to 6:00 pm, in Lecture Room 3 of Merrill Science Center. Tea and snacks will be served before seminars at 4:15 in 204 Merrill. If you would like to be mailed seminar announcements, please send an email to physics@amherst.edu

Tue, Sep 26, 2017

Professor Paul Hess, Middlebury College

Tue, Oct 3, 2017

Assistant Professor Natasha Holmes, Cornell

Tue, Oct 17, 2017

Associate Professor Xuemei Cheng, Bryn Mawr

Tue, Oct 24, 2017

Tue, Oct 31, 2017

Weekly Physics & Astronomy Seminar: TBA

Unless otherwise noted, all physics seminars and colloquium are held on Tuesdays from 4:45 to 6:00 pm, in Lecture Room 3 of Merrill Science Center. Tea and snacks will be served before seminars at 4:15 in 204 Merrill. If you would like to be mailed seminar announcements, please send an email to physics@amherst.edu

Tue, Nov 7, 2017

Principal Research Scientist Herman Marshal, MIT Kavli Institute: "The Future of X-ray Polarimetry in Astronomy"

I will present several projects to measure the X-ray polarizations of astronomical sources over the next 5-10 years. Previous observations were obtained in the 1970s for bright Galactic sources such as X-ray binaries and the Crab Nebula using a Bragg reflection from graphite crystals, limiting the measurements to 2.6 and 5.2 keV. Recently, a few detections have been reported using Compton scattering at hard X-rays. A newly approved NASA mission is the Imaging X-ray Polarization Explorer (IXPE). It would operate in the 2-8 keV range and is expected to launch in late 2020. It has an imaging capability, with a resolution of about a half arc-minute, and should detect X-ray polarizations as low as 1-5 percent for a dozen or more active galaxies, supernova remnants, neutron stars, and X-ray binaries during a mission lifetime of a few years. I will describe the instrument and a few of the science goals. I will also describe a design for a sounding rocket based polarimeter to work in the 0.2-0.6 keV band. The method uses gratings developed at MIT and multilayer coated mirrors. Potential targets include active galaxies, isolated neutron stars, and nearby black hole binaries in outburst. The configuration is extensible to orbital use, possibly to be combined with other instruments to provide a bandpass from 0.2 to 50 keV.

Tue, Nov 14, 2017

Professor Bjoern Penning, Brandeis University:

Tue, Nov 28, 2017

Physics/Astronomy Senior Thesis Talks