Posts tagged: Physics

Lindsay Ciastko, ’15

Horch, E. P., van Belle, G. T., Davidson, J. W., Jr., Ciastko, L. A., Everett, M. E., & Bjorkman, K. S. (2015). Observations of Binary Stars with the Differential Speckle Survey Instrument. VI. Measures During 2014 at the Discovery Channel Telescope. arXiv:1509.03498.

Abstract: We present the results of 938 speckle measures of double stars and suspected double stars drawn mainly from the Hipparcos Catalogue, as well as 208 observations where no companion was noted. One hundred fourteen pairs have been resolved for the first time. The data were obtained during four observing runs in 2014 using the Differential Speckle Survey Instrument (DSSI) at Lowell Observatory’s Discovery Channel Telescope. The measurement precision obtained when comparing to ephemeris positions of binaries with very well-known orbits is generally less than 2 mas in separation and 0.5 degrees in position angle. Differential photometry is found to have internal precision of approximately 0.1 magnitudes and to be in very good agreement with Hipparcos measures in cases where the comparison is most relevant. We also estimate the detection limit in the cases where no companion was found. Visual orbital elements are derived for 6 systems.

Cassandra Waun, ’13, Erica Bennett, ’13, Erica Earl, ’14

McCaffrey, V. P., Zellner, N. E. B., Waun, C. M., Bennett, E. R., & Earl, E. K. (2014). Reactivity and Survivability of Glycolaldehyde in Simulated Meteorite Impact Experiments. Origins of Life and Evolution of Biospheres, 1-14.

Abstract: Sugars of extraterrestrial origin have been observed in the interstellar medium (ISM), in at least one comet spectrum, and in several carbonaceous chondritic meteorites that have been recovered from the surface of the Earth. The origins of these sugars within the meteorites have been debated. To explore the possibility that sugars could be generated during shock events, this paper reports on the results of the first laboratory impact experiments wherein glycolaldehyde, found in the ISM, as well as glycolaldehyde mixed with montmorillonite clay, have been subjected to reverberated shocks from ~5 to >25 GPa. New biologically relevant molecules, including threose, erythrose and ethylene glycol, were identified in the resulting samples. These results show that sugar molecules can not only survive but also become more complex during impact delivery to planetary bodies.


Jenny Tobin

Tobin, J., & Christen, D. K. (2003).  Uncovering the electrical properties of four potential super-conductors through construction of a new cryogenic system and associated LabVIEW program. Journal of Undergraduate Research, U.S. Department of Energy, Office of Science, 3, 138.

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