News: 2024

July

UChicago faculty members receive named, distinguished service professorships in 2024

July 1, 2024

Clockwise from top left: David Archer, Benson Farb, Yamuna Krishnan, Young-Kee Kim

Four Physical Sciences Division faculty members have received distinguished service professorships or named professorships. Congratulations, Profs. Archer, Farb, Kim, and Krishnan!


June

MIT ice flow study takes ‘big’ step towards understanding sea level rise, scientists say

June 27, 2024

ice flow on the Ross Ice Shelf in Antarctica

Scientists have long known that melting glaciers contribute significantly to rising sea levels. However, the complex ways they move deep within are not fully understood, a process critical to understanding this melting. Two MIT researchers, including incoming GeoSci Asst. Prof. Meghana Ranganathan, have created the first usable model to analyze movements across the Antarctic Ice Sheet, looking at how ice flows in the glacier’s core.


Unlocking the future of AI: How CacheGen is revolutionizing large language models

June 26, 2024

CacheGen, developed by researchers from the University of Chicago, Stanford, and Microsoft, and led by UChicago computer scientist Junchen Jiang, promises to revolutionize LLM efficiency by addressing the critical challenge of processing long contexts.


UChicago scientists pioneer technique to visualize anti-ferroelectric materials

June 26, 2024

King and lab member Ruiyu Li adjust settings on instruments in the microscopy lab

University of Chicago chemists in Sarah King's lab have announced a new way to image antiferroelectric materials, which could one day lead to new types of technology. 


Aboard a drilling rig in the Mediterranean, scientists seek to understand Earth’s past climates

June 26, 2024

participants of an expedition to the Atlantic and Mediterranean in front of the ship, the JOIDES Resolution

UChicago geologist Clara Blättler spent two months at sea extracting rock cores to recreate the history of climate.


Revived technology used to count individual photons from distant galaxies

June 26, 2024

SOAR Telescope on Cerro Pachon in Chile

Enabled by a U.S. Department of Energy program, a collaboration of scientists from Fermilab, UChicago, NOIRLab, and other institutions demonstrated that skipper-CCD detectors can be utilized to improve cosmology research.


Experiment aims to help battle rising heat

June 25, 2024

Clara Blättler

A CBS Saturday Morning video discusses a farmer participating in an unusual experiment to help a farm thrive in rising temperatures. GeoSci Asst. Prof. Clara Blättler comments, starting at 2:25.


Upgraded synchrotron starts up at Argonne National Laboratory

June 25, 2024

Main control room operator Rebecca Weber (at left) turns the key that enables the shutter at the 27-ID beamline at the Advanced Photon Source, while floor coordinator Matt Spilker looks on.

Lab heralds ‘new era of scientific discovery’ for everything from batteries to biology at Advanced Photon Source.


Light from darkness: Using photonic crystal cavities to build superconductors

June 24, 2024

quantum computer

Researchers at UChicago Pritzker Molecular Engineering and UChicago Physics plan to use a $1.5 million grant from the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation to develop an entirely new method of engineering superconductors for quantum computers and other high-tech applications.


These are the most beautiful equations, according to mathematicians

June 21, 2024

Loewner differential equation

In this Scientific American article, mathematicians, including associate professor Ewain Gwynne, picked the most dazzling, thought-provoking, and compelling equations they know.


The University of Chicago’s new climate initiative

June 20, 2024

April 8 2024 solar eclipse

Brave research program or potentially dangerous foray into solar geoengineering? UChicago President Alivisatos and numerous PSD professors discuss the topic in this Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists article.


Meta has created a way to watermark AI-generated speech

June 20, 2024

collage of sound waves and the back of a man's head

The tool, called AudioSeal, could eventually help tackle the growing use of voice cloning tools for scams and misinformation. Computer scientist Ben Zhao discusses the system in this MIT Technology Review article. 


David Ballantyne Rowley, UChicago geologist who overturned conventional wisdom about Earth’s surface evolution, 1954–2024

June 14, 2024

David Rowley

David Ballantyne Rowley, Professor Emeritus in UChicago’s Department of the Geophysical Sciences, who specialized in paleoaltimetry, paleogeography, and tectonics, is remembered for noble contrarianism, gregarious curiosity, and love of nature. 

 


Giant Magellan Telescope enclosure ready for construction

June 13, 2024

The Giant Magellan Telescope and architecture and engineering firm IDOM announced that the telescope’s enclosure, set to be one of the world’s largest astronomical facilities, passed its final design review and is now ready for construction in Chile. The review marks a major milestone for the telescope, which is now 40% under construction and on track to be operational by the early 2030s.


UChicago President Paul Alivisatos shares 2024 Kavli Prize in Nanoscience

June 12, 2024

Paul Alivisatos

The prestigious award recognizes pioneering work in nanoscale materials for medical applications. Alivisatos, University President and the John D. MacArthur Distinguished Service Professor in the Department of Chemistry, is widely known as a pioneer in nanoscience, the study of how materials behave at extremely tiny scales.