News: 2023


The moon is 40 million years older than thought, ancient crystal suggests

October 23, 2023

Astronaut Harrison H. Schmitt works beside a boulder during the Apollo 17 mission to the moon in 1972

The moon’s surface formed at least 40 million years earlier than previously thought, according to a new study of an ancient crystal embedded in rock collected by Apollo 17 astronauts. Washington Post article features GeoSci alumna Jennika Greer and professor Philipp Heck.

Chicago region designated US Tech Hub for quantum technologies by Biden-Harris administration

October 23, 2023

Chicago skyline

The Chicago region has been named an official US Regional and Innovation Technology Hub for quantum technologies by the Biden-Harris administration, a designation that opens the door to new federal funding and recognizes the growing strength of an ecosystem poised to become the heart of the nation’s quantum economy.

Your personal information is probably being used to train generative AI models

October 19, 2023

illustration of a digital-styled eye made from dots of light

Prof. Ben Zhao discusses in Scientific American article how AI models are often trained using information not intended for the public, such as medical images.

Climate change will prompt expansion of farming in northern wilderness

October 19, 2023

Farmland in North Dakota

New Scientist highlighted the work of former Dept. of the Geophysical Sciences PhD student and postdoc James Franke on shifting agricultural regions under climate change (with Prof. Liz Moyer), and Moyer was quoted.

Research suggests that privacy and security protection fell to the wayside during remote learning

October 19, 2023

a child's hands on a laptop keyboard

A qualitative research study conducted by faculty and students at the University of Chicago and University of Maryland revealed key tensions and breakdowns in the sociotechnical infrastructure of emergency remote learning that contributed to elementary school children’s privacy and data being compromised.

The toll of heat deaths in the Phoenix area soars after the hottest summer on record

October 19, 2023

Noboru Nakamura

In Arizona Daily Sun article, Geophysical Sciences Prof. Noboru Nakamura says that "when the jet stream meanders, it creates a heat dome, a pool of very warm air under this displaced jet's almost like a warm blanket."

Can language models replace programmers?

October 19, 2023

PSD against a white and turquoise background

MarkTechPost article highlights UChicago researchers' SWE-bench framework, which focuses on real-world software engineering issues, like patch generation and complex context reasoning, offering a more realistic and comprehensive evaluation for enhancing language models with software engineering capabilities.

FeetThrough tech guides walking users ... by shocking their feet?

October 13, 2023

bare feet wearing FeetThrough prototype

New Atlas article features FeetThrough, a prototype being developed by Assoc. Prof. Pedro Lopes.

In defense of DEI in science

October 13, 2023

psd logo

For a Chicago Maroon op-ed, Assoc. Prof. Andrew Ferguson, Prof. Benoît Roux, Assoc. Prof. John Anderson, Biophysical Sciences Curriculum Director Adam T. Hammond, Assoc. Prof. Graham Slater, Prof. Henry Hoffmann, and Prof. Aaron P. Esser-Kahn argue that DEI initiatives in higher education fundamentally align with scientific rigor and institutional policies and play an important role in ensuring that we recruit and retain the absolute best scholars and provide a supportive climate within which all of us can pursue world-class research and teaching.

Arctic sea ice resumes its slide

October 13, 2023

John Anderson

Forbes article mentions a 2018 lecture by James Anderson.

What’s inside Earth?

October 10, 2023


GeoSci Asst. Prof. Sunyoung Park says Earth's mantle isn't liquid, but it's less rigid than sinking oceanic crust, adding that "in geological timescale[s], it's almost acting like a fluid, although it's solid rock."

How many animals have ever existed on Earth?

October 9, 2023

David Jablonski

GeoSci Prof. David Jablonski says, "The standard estimate is that 99.9% of species that have ever lived are extinct," but adds that that is "a crude approximation."

UChicago researchers identify a novel function of RNA-binding protein RBFOX2 that drives leukemia

October 6, 2023

Image depicting DNA methylation, the main epigenetic modification of DNA

To understand how RBFOX2 modifies cell function, Chemist Chuan He and colleagues grew malignant hematopoietic stem cells with RBFOX2 deactivated in petri dishes and found that the proliferative capacity of the cells was markedly reduced, indicating that there might be higher expression of RBFOX2 in leukemia cells.

South Side Science Festival brings community to campus

October 5, 2023

Child in lab coat standing behind frame reading

Kids learn to see themselves in STEM at annual event, which drew more than 4,500 attendees.

University of Chicago alum Moungi Bawendi shares Nobel Prize in Chemistry for work on quantum dots

October 5, 2023

Moungi Bawendi

CBS News Chicago reports on 2023 Nobel laureate Moungi Bawendi being a UChicago alum.