Physics

From left to right, the Columbia physicists working on LIGO: Zsuzsa Márka, Szabi Márka, and Imre Bartos.

Three Columbia astrophysicists are celebrating a major scientific discovery – the detection of gravitational waves. The finding, made by the LIGO Observatory in which the Columbia team plays an integral role...

Dear Alma,

This year is the centennial of Einstein’s general theory of relativity. Given how famous our physics department became, did he ever come to Columbia to talk about it?

Physics professor Brian Cole is renowned for Accelerated Physics, his two-semester course for first-year students that covers the usual introductory physics sequence, plus relativity, waves and introductory quantum mechanics.

This summer’s announcement that the Large Hadron Supercollider in Geneva had detected likely proof of the Higgs boson, an elusive and long-sought particle, brought back memories for Columbia neuroscientist Larry Abbott.

Mathematics and Physics Professor Brian Greene will launch two free online courses on March 6 as part of his new online teaching initiative, World Science University.

Columbia campus

Three Columbia faculty members have been named research fellows by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, which awards two-year, $50,000 grants to support the work of exceptional early-career scientists and scholars whose achievements and potential identify them as rising stars.

Five Columbia faculty members have been named fellows of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the world’s largest general scientific society.

An evaporation harvesting device made of Legos, a spore-coated rubber sheet, a coil and a magnet. The device produces electricity when sheet bends and straightens in response to moisture. Image Credit: Xi Chen/Columbia University

Legos may seem like an unlikely foundation for scientific research, but the building blocks have been a part of Ozgur Sahin’s work since he made a mechanical adding device with them when he was 11.

coronal hole

Picture of the sun with a coronal hole (the large dark region at the bottom). Credit: NASA

Daniel Wolf Savin and Michael Hahn have been fascinated by the universe since they were boys.

Latha Venkataraman, a professor of applied physics and applied mathematics, discovered a new technique to measure the electrical conduction of single molecules wired to electrodes. This graphic shows the maximum force that a molecule circuit can sustain under stress and shows that the force varies with the chemical character of the molecule making up the circuit.

In 2001, at the dawn of the nanoscale era, the newly formed Columbia Nanoscale Science and Engineering Center received a 10-year grant from the National Science Foundation large enough to support 20 professors with one or two graduate students apiece.

Pages