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A woman with shoulder-length hair wears an earset microphone and presents to an unseen audience. Light focuses on her as stands in front of a soft orange-pink gradient.

Black holes devour light — except when they create it, finds physics undergrad

When physics senior Phia Morton flew to Italy to do research, she couldn’t have imagined what she’d find hidden in the stars: the first strong candidate of a black hole merger emitting light. This discovery deepens knowledge on the cosmic structures and may even give a new opinion on how quickly the universe is expanding.

Astrophysicist Jeffrey Hazboun stands in front of an graphic of Earth surrounded by satellites and other cosmic bodies.

Gravitational waves discovery topic of Dec. 6 Oregon State Science Pub

The discovery related to gravitational waves which made international headlines earlier this year and was predicted by Albert Einstein more than a century ago will be the topic of Oregon State University’s Science Pub on Dec. 6. Jeff Hazboun, an astrophysicist in the College of Science and one of the researchers who led the project that resulted in the gravitational wave astronomy breakthrough, will talk about the discovery and future directions for the research at 6 p.m. Dec. 6 at the Old World Deli in Corvallis.

Department of Physics head Davide Lazatti sits in a well-lit office space.

When stars burst: Oregon State astrophysicist's predictions confirmed by new findings

An international research group confirmed College of Science predictions about exploding stars located at the center of galaxies.

Xavier Siemens, left, and Jeff Hazboun of the College of Science

Astrophysics collaboration led by Oregon State finds 'chorus' of gravitational waves

The detection of gravitational waves opens a whole new window onto supermassive black holes – a vitally important step in advancing human knowledge and helping to unlock the mysteries of how structures are formed in the cosmos.

Nima Laal headshot
Graduate students

Martin O'Neill fellow Nima Laal changing the picture of modern physics

Physics Ph.D. candidate Nima Laal has a poster on his wall of an alien spaceship. The text on the bottom reads “I want to believe.”

To Laal, the poster isn’t referencing creatures from another planet, but instead the search for elusive gravitational waves.

Researchers perform tests in ProtoDUNE’s electric field cage.

Particle physicist probes secrets of the universe with Department of Energy grant

Professor of Physics Heidi Schellman is leading an international experiment to explore the existence of the universe. The project, titled “Essential Computing and Software Development for the DUNE experiment,” has received a $3M grant from the Department of Energy.

Aerial campus shot with the sun glowing through the trees
Faculty and Staff

University Day awards recognize astrophysics discoveries and service during the pandemic

Physicist Davide Lazzati and Chemstores storekeeper Sierra Hansen win 2021 University Day awards.

Isabel Rodriguez is the 2021 Harriet “Hattie” Redmond Awardee!
Graduate students

Isabel Rodriguez is the 2021 Harriet 'Hattie' Redmond Awardee

Congratulations to Isabel Rodriguez (M.S. Physics '21) for being the 2021 recipient of the Harriet “Hattie” Redmond Award. This award celebrates a member of the OSU community who works as an agent of change in service of racial justice and gender equity.

Graphic showing pulsar light traveling to Earth amid a sea of gravitational waves.

Oregon State leading $17M effort to understand universe via low-frequency gravitational waves

Funded by the NSF as a Physics Frontiers Center, the North American Nanohertz Observatory for Gravitational Waves, or NANOGrav, research group at OSU operates under the direction of Xavier Siemens, professor of physics.

Planetary geologist and OSU alumna Briony Horgan in front of an image of the Perseverance rover.
Alumni and Friends

Oregon State alum plays integral role in Perseverance landing

2005 physics alumna and planetary geologist Briony Horgan's research was key to determining the location on Mars for the Perseverance rover to explore. Explaining the challenge her team faced, she said, "“If we had to choose just one spot on Earth to gather all the data about the entire history of the planet — well, where would you go?”

Graphic showing pulsar light traveling to Earth amid a sea of gravitational waves.

Gravitational wave search finds hopeful new clue

An international team, which includes Oregon State graduate and undergraduate students, has gotten closer than ever before to detecting evidence of supermassive black holes.