News » Archives » March 2016

Continuing the search for gravitational waves

Author: William G. Gilroy

 

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In February, the LIGO Scientific Collaboration announced it had detected gravitational waves for the first time, confirming the last prediction of Albert Einstein’s theory of relativity. Somewhat overlooked in the excitement that followed is the fact that scientists don’t know the exact location the waves were coming from. University of Notre Dame astronomer Peter Garnavich is leading a group of researchers who are hoping to more precisely locate where future gravitational waves originate.

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In memoriam: Paul R. Chagnon, professor emeritus of physics at Notre Dame

Author: Michael O. Garvey

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Paul R. Chagnon, professor emeritus of physics at the University of Notre Dame, died March 22 at his home in South Bend. He was 86. Chagnon taught physics and conducted research in nuclear physics at Notre Dame for 32 years before retiring in 1995. He published numerous articles on his research, and was admired as a stalwart of Notre Dame’s physics faculty. His teaching is honored annually at Notre Dame’s commencement ceremonies by the undergraduate Paul Chagnon Service Award.

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VIDEO: Faculty hires in adult and iPS stem cell research to advance interdisciplinary pursuit of ethical treatments

Author: Amanda Skofstad

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Notre Dame’s commitment to research on adult and induced pluripotent stem cells finds its most significant expression in the Center for Stem Cells and Regenerative Medicine, which was established in 2015 to increase the number of faculty and students addressing the complex scientific and ethical questions that accompany all medical advances in the stem cell field.

 

 

 

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Astrophysicists catch two supernovae at the moment of explosion

Author: Notre Dame News

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For the first time, a “shock breakout” in an exploding supergiant star has been discovered at visible wavelengths. An international team of astrophysicists led by Peter Garnavich, professor of astrophysics at the University of Notre Dame, has caught two supernovae in the act of exploding. Using the Kepler space telescope, the team spent three years observing 50 trillion stars for the chance to watch as supersonic shock waves reached their surfaces after explosions deep in the core.

Watch video video

 

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Using DNA 'fingerprinting' to understand ancestry and immunity of trees

Author: Brandi Klingerman

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When Europeans came to the New World in the 16th century, they brought measles and smallpox with them. Without the immunity Europeans had cultivated over the years, the native people in America quickly fell ill. Millions died as a result. Today, trees in the New World are also dying from diseases that were introduced through global trade started by the Europeans. However, trees are much more vulnerable than humans.

 

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Notre Dame establishes exchange program with Kyoto University Institute for Chemical Research

Author: Brian Wallheimer

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The Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry at the University of Notre Dame and Kyoto University’s Institute for Chemical Research will soon be exchanging faculty, staff, students and ideas, building on a partnership started by Notre Dame International. Chair of Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, Ken Henderson says an official memorandum of understanding between his department and Kyoto’s institute lays out a template for collaboration. In addition to enabling student and faculty visits, the agreement lays the groundwork for growing research partnerships and the development of joint conferences and workshops. It is the type of interaction envisioned when Notre Dame International and Kyoto University initiated the institutional partnership level two years ago.

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Hauenstein receives Office of Naval Research Young Investigator Program award

Author: Gene Stowe

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Jonathan Hauenstein, an associate professor in the Department of Applied and Computational Mathematics and Statistics (ACMS), has received a three-year, $510,000 award from the Office of Naval Research Young Investigator Program. The award, which includes funding for a postdoctoral associate and graduate students, will support the development of new algorithms and writing software that implements these algorithms for solving nonlinear systems arising from problems in optimization. 

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Nicholas Myers and Claire Bowen win $2,500 at 3MT competition

Author: Marissa Gebhard

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At the Three Minute Thesis competition (3MT) on Wednesday, March 16, nine graduate students at University of Notre Dame competed for prize money and a bid to the regional championships. Three graduate students from the College of Science competed. Nicholas Myers in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry won second place, and received $1,500, and Claire Bowen in the Department of Applied and Computational Mathematics and Statistics won the People’s Choice Award and received $1,000.

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Raicu named Alfred P. Sloan Fellow

Author: Gene Stowe and Marissa Gebhard

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Claudiu Raicu, an assistant professor of mathematics, has received an Alfred P. Sloan Research Fellowship. The Alfred P. Sloan Foundation has awarded the two-year fellowship to 126 researchers across the nation, including just 20 recipients in mathematics. In recognition of his distinguished performance and unique potential to make a substantial contribution to his field, he will receive a $55,000 award.

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You Be the Chemist comes to Notre Dame

Author: Gene Stowe

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Notre Dame hosted 22 local middle school students in the first St. Joseph County You Be the Chemist (YBTC) Local Challenge, sponsored by Dow Chemical Company, in the Jordan Hall of Science on March 12. Chemistry graduate students Karen Bailey, Kasey Clear, and Emily Amenson organized the event in collaboration with the Chemistry Graduate Student Organization (CGSO) and Association for Women in Science, Notre Dame Chapter (AWIS-ND). Members of CGSO tutored students in grades fifth to eight at Edison Intermediate Center, Christ the King Catholic School, and Holy Family School for weeks and judged the event.

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Heidelberg exchange program promotes research training

Author: Gene Stowe

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Through Notre Dame International, the University of Notre Dame and Heidelberg University have established a collaboration in which students from Germany have taken classes and conducted research at Notre Dame since August, part of an ongoing, broad collaboration with Heidelberg University that was established in 2104. Alex Dimmling and Lennart Schleper, who both finished their bachelor’s degrees at Heidelberg last June, are returning to Germany to pursue master’s degrees with credit from the Notre Dame experience.

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Science alumnus transforms developing countries’ prison medical care

Author: Gene Stowe

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Notre Dame alumnus Dr. John May ND '84 switched his major from engineering to preprofessional studies when he was inspired by the story of physician-humanitarian Dr. Tom Dooley.  Later, he earned an M.D. at Loyola-Stritch School of Medicine in Chicago, and dedicated his career to providing medical care in jails and prisons, both in the United States and around the world. He founded Healing through Walls in 2001 in Haiti, where the organization now has 50 medical professional employees working in prisons. Healing through Walls also operates in the Dominican Republic, Jamaica, Malawi and the Congo and consults across the Caribbean and Africa.

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Helping to stop colorectal cancer by identifying metastasis chances early

Author: Brandi Klingerman

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Colorectal cancer, one of the most commonly diagnosed cancers in the United States, is not a commonly discussed disease. Often symptomless in early stages, the cancer is more difficult to treat as it progresses, requiring chemotherapy in later stages. Researchers at the University of Notre Dame are working on a way to identify patients who would benefit from chemotherapy before the cancer progresses.

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Graduate students on the clock to explain research, win competition

Author: Sue Lister

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Nine University of Notre Dame graduate students will compete for prize money and a bid to the regional championships during the Three Minute Thesis competition on Wednesday (March 16). Known as 3MT, the competition features graduate students across all disciplines explaining their research in clear and succinct language appropriate for an audience of specialists and non-specialists alike, all within three minutes.

3MT competitors address a live audience and panel of judges with a single static slide accompanying their presentations. The students are vying for monetary prizes, and the Notre Dame winner will claim a spot in the Midwestern Association of Graduate Schools 3MT regional competition in Chicago on April 8.

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Kashiv publishes study on imaging trace elements in organelles

Author: Gene Stowe

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Yoav Kashiv, a visiting scholar in the Department of Physics, is the lead author on a recently-published paper about breakthrough success at imaging trace elements in individual organelles within the cell. The paper, “Imaging trace element distributions in single organelles and subcellular features”, was published in February in the journal Scientific Reports. Kashiv’s collaborators are Jotham R. Austin II (University of Chicago), Barry Lai, Volker Rose, Stefan Vogt (Argonne National Laboratory), and Malek El-Muayed (Northwestern University).

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