UWB Society of Physics Students is recognized as an Outstanding Chapter
December 1, 2017
Because of their accomplishments during the 2016-17 year, the UW Bothell Society of Physics Students (SPS) earned the designation of an SPS Outstanding Chapter from the SPS national office. This is the highest level of distinction that an SPS chapter can achieve, and less than 10% of SPS chapters receive the honor.
Some of the activities of UWB SPS during the past school year included attending the regional SPS meeting at Central Washington University and volunteering at the UWB Inspire STEM festival.
If you would like to get involved with the campus SPS chapter, consider attending the Physics Club--Mondays at 3:15pm , Discovery 368.
Society of Physics Students website
UW Bothell students share in cosmic discoveries
October 26, 2017
Two UWB students experienced the excitement of major astronomical discoveries through their summer research with the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-wave Observatory (LIGO). Paul Marsh, an electrical engineering graduate student, and Jomardee Perkins, a senior physics major, are part of the UW Bothell LIGO Scientific Collaboration Group led by Joey Shapiro Key, assistant professor of physics. Both Paul and Jomardee worked closely with LIGO this summer--Paul as a LIGO fellow and Jomardee as a Washington NASA Space Grant Consortium intern.
On August 14, LIGO had its fifth detection of a merger of two black holes. For the first time, this discovery was confirmed by the Virgo observatory in Italy. Three days later on August 17, LIGO made an amazing discovery--the collision of two neutron stars. This discovery was confirmed by visible light telescopes. “This is what we call multimessenger astrophysics,” said Key. “Really, it’s new science.”
LIGO, the Virgo detector, and partners at other observatories announced this scientific feat on October 16. Joey Key is one of three UW faculty who are part of the LIGO-Virgo collaboration. “Today’s announcement marks the first time that we have detected gravitational waves from the merger of two neutron stars," said Professor Key. "In addition, this is the first time that other observatories detected electromagnetic waves emanating from the astronomical event that generated these gravitational waves.” Professor Key and the UWB LIGO Scientific Collaboration Group analyze data from these detection events.
Read more about UWB students' work with LIGO
Read more about LIGO's detection of the collision of neutron stars on UWNews
PSD Seminar series, Wednesdays at 3:30
September 28, 2017
The Physical Sciences Division 2017 Seminar series kicked off yesterday with excellent presentations by 3 student researchers. Please join us each upcoming Wednesday for more chemistry and physics presentations that will inform and excite you. All are welcome!
PSD 2017 Seminar Schedule
Wednesdays at 3:30 pm
UW2 Room 211--New Room!
Refreshments after the presentations
Sept 27—Student summer research presentations
Oct 4—Gwynne Crowder, Bellevue College: Gravitational Wave Stochastic Background
Oct 11—Paul Marsh, UWB Electrical Engineering: LIGO Control Systems
Oct 18—Rachel Scherr, Seattle Pacific University: Fixed and growth mindsets in physics graduate admissions
Oct 25—Krishna Venkateswara, University of Washington: Experimental Gravity
Nov 1—Jeff Hazboun, University of Texas Rio Grande Valley: Pulsar Signal Simulator
Nov 8—Holly Gummelt, Planetary Resources: Asteroid Mining
Nov 15—Michael Park, University of Washington: Large Hardon Collider (LHC)
Nov 22—Kiyo Masui, University of British Columbia: Large-scale Structure of the Universe
Nov 29—Dan Jaffe, UWB: Direct Demonstration of the CO2 Greenhouse Effect
Dec 6—Subramanian Ramachandran, UWB: Experimental Physics Research
Student summer research presentations, September 27
September 21, 2017
Learn about the summer research projects of 3 Physics and Chemistry students at the Physical Sciences Division (PSD) seminar series kickoff. This is a great opportunity to learn about the student research that takes place on campus, meet other students and faculty, and enjoy snacks. All students are invited! PSD students and faculty are especially encouraged to attend.
September 27, Wednesday
Discovery Hall Room 368
Refreshments after the presentations
The student presenters and their topics are:
Anchala Krishnan Persistent Homology and Random Models of Gaussian Primes
Katherine Reyes Detection and Characterization of Non-Gravitational Wave Noise Transients in LIGO Data Using BayesWave
Jomardee Perkins Characterization of Transient Noise in LIGO
The seminar series will continue each Wednesday at 3:30pm in Discovery 368. Everyone is welcome!
First Physics graduates
June 13, 2017
The UW Bothell class of 2017 includes two graduates in Physics. We celebrate these graduates and this milestone in the new Physics degree program. “The best part about building a new physics program at UW Bothell is working with our inspiring physics students,” said Joey Shapiro Key, assistant professor in physics. Our two stellar grads, Josh Christensen and Holly Gummelt, have truly left their mark on campus and in the Physics program. Congrats, Holly and Josh!
Read more about Josh and Holly on the UWB News page
Dr. Erin Hill, Physics, recognized for innovative use of technology in the classroom
June 8, 2017
Dr. Erin Hill, Physics lecturer, was recognized as an "Innovator among Us" in the UW provost's latest edition on teaching with technology. In her classroom, Hill has focused on using technology to help students learn how to learn. She has incorporated the use of Doceri, an interactive whiteboard app, in her classes. Doceri has improved students' classroom experience. It allows Hill to move throughout the classroom, interacting with students, and displaying their work, as well as her notes and examples, in real time. As the Innovators article states, "For Hill, the tool is doing exactly what she hoped. Hill finds that when she can easily interact with students in this way, she is effectively using their learning processes to teach the course material. 'It shifts the dynamic,' she said, 'to put the emphasis more on the learner than on the teacher—and learning begins and ends with the learner.'"
Read more about Dr. Hill's use of technology here
Read the June 2017 edition of Innovators among Us
Aerobiology workshop organized by Jaffe Group
May 4, 2017
The Jaffe Group (specifically, Dr. Dan Jaffe and Dee Ann Lommers-Johnson) along with Dr. Andrew C. Schuerger of the University of Florida, Space Life Sciences Lab, organized a NASA-funded workshop in Bend, Oregon, at the beginning of May. This workshop gathered researchers from several universities and agencies to discuss a future experiment in "Aerobiology." This is the study of the transport and biology of microbes in the atmosphere. Researchers plan to use Mt. Bachelor as a key sampling location to study the long-range transport of microbes in the global atmosphere. Dr. David Smith, now at NASA Ames Research Center, was one of the workshop participants. He is a UW alum (PhD Biology) and previously did ground-breaking work on aerobiology at Mt. Bachelor Observatory (see his publications in 2011-2013). Look for a future project studying microbes in the sky!
In addition to PI Andrew Schuerger, David Smith, and Dan Jaffe, other participants were Co-PI Dale W. Griffin (US Geological Survey), Susannah M. Burrows (Pacific Northwest National Laboratory), Brent C. Christner (University of Florida), Cristina Gonzalez-Martin (University of La Laguna, Tenerife, Spain), Erin K. Lipp (University of Georgia), David G. Schmale (Virginia Tech), Boris Wawrik (University of Oklahoma), and Hongbin Yu (University of Maryland and NASA Goddard Space Flight Center).
Mt. Bachelor Observatory is a UWB research site on the summit of Mt. Bachelor in central Oregon. It was started in 2004 by UWB Professor Dan Jaffe.
Learn more about Mt. Bachelor Observatory.
New UWB physics honor society inducts 4 students
May 1, 2017
The newest chapter of Sigma Pi Sigma, the physics honor society housed within the Society of Physics Students, was installed at UW Bothell. Sigma Pi Sigma exists to honor outstanding scholarship in physics, to encourage interest in physics, to promote service, and to provide fellowship. Professor William DeGraffenreid, past president of Sigma Pi Sigma and chair of the Department of Physics and Astronomy at California State University, Sacramento, participated in the installation ceremony. While at UW Bothell, Professor DeGraffenreid also gave a research talk titled "Cavity Ring Down Spectroscopy: Kilometer Pathlengths on a Tabletop."
The four outstanding physics majors who were inducted into Sigma Pi Sigma are Tyler Gilbert, Holly Gummelt, Connor Leupold, and Katherine Reyes.
Tyler Gilbert signing his name in the membership book.
Holly Gummelt with UW Bothell Professor Emeritus Warren Buck.
Connor Leupold is congratulated by UW Bothell Professor Joey Key.
Katherine Reyes with Professor William DeGraffenreid, past president of Sigma Pi Sigma.
Division Chair's Summer Undergraduate Research Award winners
April 12, 2017
Three outstanding undergraduates in the UWB Physical Sciences Division received a Physical Sciences Division Chair's Summer Undergraduate Research award. These awards of $2000 each will support the students' summer research. Congratulations to these remarkable students!
Fong Liew, a Biochemistry major, will be working with Dr. Hyung Kim on a project titled "Protein-protein interactions on Heme cofactors.”
Ryan Peffer, a Chemistry major with Math and Physics minors, will be working with Dr. Lori Robins on a project titled “Kinetic isotope effects in Thiolactones.”
Katherine Reyes, a Physics major, will be working with Dr. Joey Key on a project titled “Identification and characterization of glitches in LIGO data.”
New research maps Glucose-6-Phosphate Isomerase—A Rheumatoid Arthritis autoantigen
April 10, 2017
In a newly published paper in Journal of Proteomics & Bioinformatics, UWB Assistant Professor Peter Anderson and his German colleagues describe how antibodies bind to glucose-6-phosphate isomerase (GPI), a known antigen in patients with rheumatoid arthritis. In collaboration with a research group at the University of Rostock (Germany), Anderson's research group combined computational and experimental work to map the epitope regions on GPI for two specific monoclonal antibodies, 11H3 and 46H9. The computational and experimental results of the research groups agree well with one another and provide insight into a fundamental immunological process with clinical significance.
Read the paper here
American Chemical Society Undergraduate Research Symposium at UW Bothell on April 29
February 27, 2017
This year's Undergraduate Research Symposium of the American Chemical Society Puget Sound chapter will be held at UW Bothell on Saturday, April 29, 2017. Plan to attend!
The deadline to submit a research abstract is March 31, 2017.
The registration deadline is April 7, 2017.
Registration and abstract submission form
Download a flyer here
New research describes how a "blob" of warm seawater increased ozone levels
February 15, 2017
In a new paper published in Geophysical Research Letters, UWB Professor Dan Jaffe and postdoctoral researcher Lei Zhang describe how a "blob" of unusually warm seawater influenced air quality in the western US. Their research shows how this strong offshore pattern led to elevated ozone levels at Mount Bachelor Observatory, a University of Washington research site, and other monitoring sites in the Pacific Northwest. Dr. Dan Jaffe describes the blob as "the most unusual meteorological event we’ve had in decades."
Read more on UW Today
Read the paper here
Physics major Holly Gummelt awarded Founder's Fellow Research Scholarship
Holly Gummelt, a junior Physics major, was awarded a Founder's Fellow Research Scholarship for 2016-17. Ms. Gummelt's research project is entitled Stochastic Radiation in Gravitational Wave Astronomy. She is mentored by Dr. Joey Key.
The Founder's Fellow Research Scholarships recognize undergraduate research students at UWB and allow recipients to focus more time and attention on their research, scholarship and creative activity.
Read about the 2017 UWB undergraduate scholars awards
New book by UWB Chemistry lecturer Dr. Kim Gunnerson
Dr. Kim Gunnerson, UWB Chemistry lecturer, is a coauthor of a new laboratory manual for general chemistry, Exploring General Chemistry in the Laboratory. This lab manual has the goal of simplifying an often challenging subject with applications to students' everyday lives. Because of her years of experience teaching the general chemistry sequence at UWB, Dr. Gunnerson possesses a solid knowledge of how to successfully teach introductory chemistry. When not in a general chemistry classroom, she can be found teaching introductory-level computer courses or enjoying the outdoors in the Pacific Northwest.
New faces of Physics at UWB
“Some people have never looked in a telescope before,” says Joey Key as she displays one in a University of Washington Bothell lab. “To see the rings of Saturn, that’s big because they’re really beautiful.”
Like a master tour guide, she mentions other visible highlights of the solar system: the polar ice caps on Mars, Venus in a crescent phase, the Great Red Spot on Jupiter and its four biggest moons – the ones first seen by Galileo.
“Astronomy is great because people who might think they don’t like science might still like astronomy. Space is cool,” says Key, assistant professor in the School of Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics.
The astrophysicist who came to UW Bothell in September also has her eyes on the sky through one of the biggest science projects in the 21st century, LIGO (pronounced LY’-go) or the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-wave Observatory. Key is one of the hundreds of researchers on the project that made headlines in February 2016 when it announced the detection of a gravitational wave from the collision of two black holes. The discovery proved Einstein’s general theory of relativity.
Read the full UW Bothell news article
New book by UWB Chemistry lecturer Dr. Charity Lovitt
UWB Chemistry lecturer Dr. Charity Lovitt is one of the editors of Integrating Information Literacy into the Chemistry Curriculum, a new book in the American Chemical Society Symposium Series. This book was a collaboration between Dr. Lovitt and librarians from the Colorado School of Mines and James Madison University. To quote from the book's preface, "information literacy, the ability to find, evaluate, and use information resources, is an important skill for future chemists." This collection provides concrete ways that Chemistry instructors can incorporate the teaching of information literacy in their courses in ways that also advance chemistry content knowledge. The book includes case studies of Chemistry instructors teaching information literacy and provides examples of assignments that teach information literacy skills as a key component of the curriculum.
In addition to teaching, Dr. Lovitt is faculty advisor to the Science and Technology Living Learning Community and was a 2015-16 UWB fellow in Community-Based Learning and Research, helping to develop partnerships between the School of STEM and the Pacific Science Center.
Students aid in breakthrough against dementia
University of Washington Bothell biochemistry professor Lori Robins and two of her students share in the credit for ground-breaking research on dementia disorders. Their research helped Briotech, a local bio-tech company, prove that its product, HOCl or hypochlorous acid, is effective in destroying prions, the proteins that cause dementia disorders. These findings contribute to the research to prevent and treat disorders such as mad cow disease, Alzheimer's, and Parkinson's. Research conducted for the National Institutes of Health (NIH) confirmed the results in mice. The research findings were recently published in the journal PLOS Pathogens.
Read the full UW Bothell news article
Read the full journal article in PLOS Pathogens
UWB joins LIGO Scientific Collaboration
The University of Washington Bothell (UWB) is a new member of the LIGO Scientific Collaboration (LSC), joining 83 institutions in 15 countries working to observe gravitational waves with the Laser Interferometer Gravitational wave Observatory (LIGO). UWB Assistant Professor of Physics Joey Shapiro Key serves as the Principal Investigator for the group with new LSC members Physics Lecturer Matthew DePies and Physics major Holly Gummelt.
Celebrating Warren Buck
Everything will change. Nothing's permanent. Warren Buck
This quote is true for the School of STEM as Warren Buck moved from Professor to retired Professor Emeritus. In June, Warren Buck was recognized for his tireless work for the university and our students as he began his retirement. Warren began his long service to UWB as Chancellor and Dean in 1999. Later he became Chancellor Emeritus and then returned to the classroom full time as a Professor to share his love of science and the beauty of physics. Warren was instrumental in making the Physics degree at UWB a reality.
In November 2014, Warren was honored as a History Maker—one of a select group of African Americans who have made substantive contributions in their fields. His oral life story is permanently housed at the Library of Congress.
See his History Maker video and read more about him
Among other things, Warren will be devoting some of his free time to serve on the Board of Visitors of his alma mater, The College of William and Mary. He also won’t be able to keep his passion out of the classroom and will continue to teach some physics classes, as well as assist with some committee work, at UWB.
We are grateful for his service to UWB and for instilling passion in the future generation of scientists.
Celebrating Warren’s love of art, science,and collaboration
In recognition of his service to UWB, the School of STEM declared May 2016 the Warren Buck Physics and Arts Month. During the culminating celebration, Warren was presented with an art piece that incorporated bark taken from felled trees on campus. Designed and created by Ni Nguyen and Ivan Owen, this art contains fractal patterns created with high-voltage electricity and laser engravings of images significant to Warren. It unites three of Warren’s passions—art, science, and collaboration.
New Society of Physics Students chapter on campus
Physics students at UW Bothell will now be able to participate in the activities and events of the new Society of Physics Students (SPS) chapter on campus. Students will be able to connect with the broader physics community through SPS and the activities and resources it provides. SPS, an organization of the American Institute of Physics, offers career resources, publications, and events, including regular conferences and meetings. PhysCon, the 2016 Quadrennial Physics Congress, will take place November 3-5, 2016, in the Silicon Valley.
Learn more about SPS
First global model of atmospheric arsenic uses data from Mt. Bachelor Observatory
The intercontinental transport of arsenic is the focus of a new paper published by Wai, Wu, Li, Jaffe and Perry in Environmental Science & Technology. This paper used data from Mt. Bachelor Observatory (MBO), a central Oregon research site of UWB Chemistry Professor Dan Jaffe. In this groundbreaking research, the authors developed the first global model of atmospheric arsenic in order to understand intercontinental transport of arsenic, an extremely toxic pollutant. They used the GEOS-Chem chemical transport model to simulate the concentrations of atmospheric arsenic and compared the model results with arsenic measurements from MBO and other sites. In order to reduce global arsenic pollution it is essential to understand its sources and transport. Wai et al. found that arsenic emissions from Asia are the dominant source of atmospheric arsenic in the Northern Hemisphere, contributing 38% of total arsenic deposition over North America. Arsenic measurements from the MBO figure prominently in the paper.
See the full paper here.
This figure shows arsenic concentrations measured at MBO for Spring 2011 compared with the results predicted from the model.
Paws-On Science exhibit inspires third grader's science fair project
UWB Chemistry Professor David Sommerfeld, along with other UWB Physical Sciences Division faculty, staff and students, guided young scientists through an experiment on ocean acidification at the UW Paws-On Science weekend at the Pacific Science Center. Participants blew through a straw into a cup filled with water and a few drops each of sodium hydroxide and bromothymol blue (a pH indicator). After a few seconds of blowing, they could see the liquid change from blue to yellow. The liquid changes color because CO2 in breath combines with the water to form a weak acid. In a similar manner, CO2 in the air mixes with water in the ocean to make ocean water more acidic. Ocean acidification stresses marine life, especially shell-forming species, and makes it more difficult for them to grow and reproduce. The cause of increasing CO2 in the atmosphere is humans' use of fossil fuels.
When one of the Paws-On Science participants needed a project for her school science fair, she jumped on the idea of ocean acidification and recreating the blowing-in-water experiment. Her mom contacted Prof. David Sommerfeld, and he gladly shared the recipe for recreating the experiment and some leftover ingredients. Her science fair project was a hit!
Read and see more.
Professor Eric Salathé serves on editorial board of new magazine
UWB Climate Science Professor Eric Salathé is serving as one of the founding editorial board members for Northwest Climate Magazine, a new publication devoted to climate issues in our region.
See the inaugural issue here.
May 20, 2015
UWB Chemistry student Taryn Meacham won a scholarship at the annual Undergraduate Research Symposium of the Puget Sound chapter of the American Chemical Society (ACS). Four UWB students also presented the results of their research in Biochemistry and Environmental Chemistry at the symposium.