Seminar Series

The Department of Physics and Astronomy has an active seminar series where members of our community meet twice a month to learn about current physics research, to watch student presentations about their research at Ithaca College, and to hear updates about faculty research. The Physics Seminar Series is usually held on Tuesdays from 12:10 pm to 1 pm with snacks and drink being provided by the physics department.

The Department of Physics and Astronomy also hosts the annual Physics Café. The Physics Café is a campus-wide lecture series sponsored by the Physics and Astronomy Department of Ithaca College. The idea is to grab and hold the attention of science and non-science majors by offering talks on exciting and accessible current topics in physics. Past Café lectures have featured the time-warping properties of black holes, the exploration of planet Mars, the communication of elephants, and remote sensing of archaeological sites. The talks are presented in a café environment, where coffee is served and students and physicists can informally discuss new ideas.

Physics & Astronomy Colloquium Schedule: Fall 2013

All seminars will be held on Tuesdays in CNS 206B at 12:10 (unless otherwise indicated)
Pizza and refreshments will be available for $1
Remember to Reduce, Reuse, Recycle - Please bring your own cup.

September 10
Peter Melcher
Ithaca College Department of Biology
Do Plants Defy Physical Laws?  
How plants move water against the forces of gravity and hydraulic resistance without using a heart-like pump.

September 24
Luke Keller
Chair, Ithaca College Department of Physics 
When did the first planets form and what were they like?

October 1
Ithaca College Physics Majors
Martin Garay MacLean & Katherine Kennovin Give a talk Entitled:
Summer Research Projects

October 15
Ithaca College Physics Majors Talk About Their Summer Research Projects:
Megan Kelleher:  Imaging Test Data Processing and Photometric Modeling for OSIRIS-REx
Sean Harkin:  Shh... Hear That? A Summer at SoundSense, LLC
Julia Russ: The Spin Seebeck Effect in Lanthanum Strontium Manganite (LSMO) Thin Films

November 12
Driss Takir
Postdoctoral Teaching Fellow, Department of Physics, Ithaca College
Spectroscopy of Outer Main Belt Asteroids and Carbonaceous Chondrites.
The carbonaceous chondrite meteorites I study are primitive meteorites that consist of some of the most pristine matter known in the Solar System, unaltered since the original condensation from the solar nebula. These meteorites have been shown to contain amino acids that are the precursor molecules to life. Some of these meteorites even contain diamonds from a highly energetic event- possibly from a supernova that occurred before the formation of our solar system's nebula. These carbon-rich meteorites are relatively rare in our earthly collections and are thought to come from primitive asteroids that orbit the Sun between 2.5 < a < 4.0 AU (between Mars and Jupiter). They are also thought to be the source of water and organics delivered to terrestrial planets during their formation. In this talk I will discuss how I developed reliable spectral signatures that can place constraints on the degree and location of thermal energy deposited in these meteorites that may have aqueously altered the minerals. Using the SpeX spectrograph/imager at NASA Infrared Telescope Facility (IRTF), I measured near-infrared (NIR: 0.7-4.0 micron) spectra of 45 outer Main Belt asteroids  and I used the JHU APL lab spectrometer to measure 10 meteorite spectra that allowed the identification of four  spectral groups, each of which reflects a distinct surface mineralogy AND THESE GROUPS HELP US TO UNDERSTAND THE DIVERSITY OF THERMAL HISTORIES IN THE ASTEROID REGIONS - POINTING THE WAY TO A BETTER UNDERSTANDING OF SOLAR SYSTEM FORMATION ENERGETICS.

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