Astrophysicists Using Space Observatories Catch Magnetar in Gigantic Stellar Belch

When it comes to eerie astrophysical effects, the neutron stars commonly known as magnetars are hard to beat. The massive remnants of exploded stars, magnetars are the size of mountains but weigh as much as the sun, and have magnetic fields hundreds of trillions of times more powerful than the earthly field that turns our compass needles north.

Caltech Physicist Marc Kamionkowski Named Winner of Ernest Orlando Lawrence Award

Marc Kamionkowski, the Robinson Professor of Theoretical Physics and Astrophysics at Caltech, has been named one of eight winners of the Ernest Orlando Lawrence Award. The announcement was made today by U.S. Secretary of Energy Samuel W. Bodman in Washington, D.C.

New Astrophysics Building Under Way

In December 2008 astronomers and astrophysicists at the California Institute of Technology will have a new home for their offices, classes, and meetings. Construction on the Cahill Center for Astronomy and Astrophysics began Jan. 31 with a groundbreaking ceremony.

Protoplanetary Disk Found Encircling Mira B

A team of astronomers is reporting today at the winter meeting of the American Astronomical Society that material from the dying star Mira A is being captured into a disk around Mira B, its companion.

New 3-D Map of Dark Matter Reveals Cosmic Scaffolding

An international team of astronomers has created a comprehensive three-dimensional map that offers a first look at the weblike large-scale distribution of dark matter in the universe. Dark matter is an invisible form of matter that accounts for most of the universe's mass, but that so far has eluded direct detection, or even a definitive explanation for its makeup.

New Type of Black-Hole Explosion Has Astrophysicists Wondering About Its Origin

Scientists are announcing this week their detection of a June 14 gamma-ray burst that probably signals a hitherto undetected type of cosmic explosion. The hybrid gamma-ray burst probably created a new black hole, but the details of how the explosion occurred are unclear.

Physicists Set New Record for Network Data Transfer

An international team of physicists, computer scientists, and network engineers led by the California Institute of Technology, CERN, and the University of Michigan and partners at the University of Florida and Vanderbilt, as well as participants from Brazil (Rio de Janeiro State University, UERJ, and the State Universities of São Paulo, USP and UNESP) and Korea (Kyungpook National University, KISTI) joined forces to set new records for sustained data transfer between storage systems during the SuperComputing 2006 (SC06) Bandwidth Challenge (BWC).

Engineers Devise New Method of Chemical Vapor Deposition for Smaller Nanostructures

Engineers at the California Institute of Technology have invented an ingenious new method for depositing tiny amounts of materials on surfaces. The researchers say that the technique, known as plasmon-assisted chemical vapor deposition, will add a powerful new tool to the existing battery of techniques used to construct microdevices.

Caltech Professor Receives German Award for Laser Innovations

H. Jeff Kimble, Valentine Professor and professor of physics at the California Institute of Technology, has been chosen by the German foundation Berthold Leibinger Stiftung as the initial recipient of its new Berthold Leibinger Zukunftspreis ("Future Prize").

Caltech Physicist Goes Postal with Four Images of Snowflakes for Commemorative Stamps

Anyone looking for a seasonal postage stamp whose beauty just can't be licked should check out Ken Libbrecht's new Holiday Snowflakes stamps.

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