News: Faculty


University of Chicago hosts first South Side Science Festival

September 20, 2022

A child in a spinning chair holds a rotating bike wheel to demo angular momentum

The all-day, all ages event highlighted the importance of STEM education, careers in science and understanding how science impacts daily life. The festival was created to connect South Side community members with science education resources.

Introducing new faculty in the Physical Sciences Division

September 15, 2022

psd logo

Welcome to the new faculty joining the Physical Sciences Division in the '22-23 academic year!

UChicago/Argonne researchers will cultivate AI model “gardens” with $3.5M NSF grant

September 8, 2022

lettuce growing in rows

The Garden Project led by Prof. Ian Foster has been awarded a $3.5 million grant from NSF for researchers from materials science, physics, and chemistry, to create “Model Gardens” that publish and curate AI models, link them with data and computing resources, and make it simple for users.

Internet disconnect: CS and social science join forces to plumb the digital divide

September 8, 2022

Illustration of hands reaching up with smart devices

A UChicago Magazine feature on the Internet Equity Initiative that uses existing data to explore the digital divide and develops new ways of measuring internet activity.

UChicago/Argonne computer scientist Ian Foster aeceives ACM/IEEE Ken Kennedy Award

September 8, 2022

Ian Foster

Ian Foster, a pioneer in cloud and high-performance computing, was named the 2022 recipient of the Ken Kennedy Award, bestowed annually by the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) and the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE).

Humanity is doing its best impression of a black hole

September 7, 2022

Daniel Holz

WIRED sat down with Prof. Daniel Holz, Dept. of Astronomy and Astrophysics, to talk about cosmic versus earthly catastrophes, how to cope with doom, and why this is a uniquely perilous time in human history—but also why all is not lost.

Groundbreaking particle physicist named Fermilab chief research officer and deputy director, UChicago professor

September 7, 2022

Bonnie Fleming

Pioneering neutrino researcher Bonnie Fleming has been named Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory chief research officer and deputy director responsible for leading all areas of science and technology. She has also been appointed part-time professor in the Department of Physics and the Enrico Fermi Institute at the University of Chicago. 

PSD in the News - August 2022

September 6, 2022

PSD against a white and turquoise background

This month PSD researchers have been featured for their efforts to predict an extreme heat belt coming to the US, understand universe expansion from black hole collisions, and detect carbon dioxide on a faraway planet using the new James Webb Space Telescope.

U.S. Department of Energy Awards $12.5 million to UChicago for new Energy Frontier Research Center

August 29, 2022

Laura Gagliardi in a room with models of molecules. The background is a white screen with another model of a molecule.

The new Catalyst Design for Decarbonization Center will investigate the mechanisms behind sustainably generated hydrogen fuel

Scientists announce first detection of carbon dioxide on a faraway planet with James Webb Space Telescope

August 25, 2022

An illustration shows what exoplanet WASP-39 b could look like- an illuminated purple orb next to a bright body

James Webb Space Telescope has allowed a team co-led by Prof. Jacob Bean to capture definitive evidence for carbon dioxide in the atmosphere of a planet about 700 light-years away from Earth, the first indisputable evidence for carbon dioxide in the atmosphere of a planet orbiting a distant star.

Report of an ancient methane release raises questions for our climate future

August 24, 2022

undersea Methane hydrates

Prof. David Archer comments on the planet’s ample stores of subsea methane hydrates as new research suggests a major destabilization of seafloor methane off the coast of Africa around 125,000 years ago.

Scientists prepare to send a balloon to search for ‘messengers from outer space’

August 23, 2022

Two scientists review a partially assembled fluorescence telescope

NASA has awarded $4.3 million for the final phase of construction and flight of the Extreme Universe Space Observatory on a Super Pressure Balloon (EUSO-SPB2) experiment led by Prof. Angela Olinto, Dept. of Astronomy and Astrophysics. Sending a scientific balloon to 110,000 feet above Earth will enable a search for tiny, ultra-high-energy cosmic ray particles and neutrinos.

Meet Dieter Gruen, renowned scientist and innovator

August 19, 2022

Dieter M. Gruen

Dieter M. Gruen, Physics PhD’51, is a 99-year-old scientist who fled Nazi Germany, worked on the atomic bomb, and continues to push the bounds of alternative energy technology. 

Watch Wendy Freedman, John Mather, and Janna Levin discuss JWST at Pioneer Works

August 19, 2022

Wendy Freedman

In a discussion at Pioneer Works in Brooklyn, NY, Nobel laureate John Mather, senior project scientist of JWST, and astronomer Wendy Freedman of the University of Chicago, a previous chair of the Giant Magellan Telescope’s board of directors, talked about the past, present and future of JWST with Columbia University theoretical cosmologist Janna Levin, director of sciences at Pioneer Works.

Black hole collisions could help us measure how fast the universe is expanding

August 18, 2022

Black holes colliding illustration

In a new study, astrophysicists Prof. Daniel Holz and Jose María Ezquiaga, a NASA Einstein and KICP Fellow, laid out a method for how to use pairs of colliding black holes to measure how fast our universe is expanding.