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RIT AST Faculty and Physics undergraduate student present at the Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul in Brazil

April 1, 2015

Physics sophomore Luke Shadler accompanied Dr. Andy Robinson to spend a week visiting the Astrophysicsresearch group at the Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul (UFRGS), Porto Alegre, Brazil, during April. Dr. Robinson and recent AST Ph.D. graduate Dr. Davide Lena are working with Dr. Thaisa Storchi-Bergmann and her group at UFRGS on a joint project to map gas flows around supermassive black holes in active galactic nuclei, using observations made with the Gemini North and South Telescopes on Mauna Kea Hawaii, and Cerro Pachon, Chile, respectively. Luke began been working with Dr. Robinson  during his freshman year, using a sophisticated computer program to model the structure and velocity field of the gas flows for comparison with the observations. His work expertise with this program so impressed Dr. Storchi-Bergmann that he was personally invited to UFRGS, to provide hands-on training for her graduate students in the use of this software. 

Archived News

April 2015: RIT PhD student Valerie Rapson and RIT Faculty Joel Kastner’s research was highlighted on the front page of the Gemini Observatory’s website and in the article titled Star Pair’s Dusty Disk Shines Light on Planet Formation on April 2, 2015.  
Feb. 2015: Celebrating 100 years of General Relativity, WebsEdge produced a video featuring RIT's Center for Computational Relativity and Gravitation
Feb. 2015: General Relativity turns 100; Astrophysicist Manuela Campanelli puts Einstein in context in AAAS talkRIT professor’s career shaped by Einstein’s theory
Feb. 2015: RIT Faculty Sukanya Chakrabarti published a paper announcing the discovery of clustered Cepheid variables that mark the location of a dwarf galaxy she had predicted several years ago.The discovery was widely covered by the media: by NBC NewsScientific AmericanSky and Telescope
Jan. 2015: RIT AST Graduate Students, AST Faculty & Alumni presented at the American Astronomical Society’s January 2015 Conference RIT Schedule of Presentations
Jan. 2015: Alexander Rasskazov, a graduate student in astrophysics (advisor D. Merritt), delivered a talk at the meeting “Black Holes in Dense Star Clusters” at the Aspen Center for Physics in Aspen, CO. The title of the talk was “Dynamical Evolution of a Supermassive Binary in a Rotating Galactic Nucleus”
Oct. 2014: David Principe RIT PhD graduate has won a prestegious FONDECYT fellowship in Chile 
June 24, 2014: Inaugural RIT AST PhD recipient Rudy Montez is one of the invited speakers at the "15 Years of Science with NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory" symposium
April 2014: AST PhD graduate Grant Tremblay has been selected for one of the 12 Einstein Fellowships awarded in 2014. The list of 2014 Einstein Fellows is available here:
April 28, 2014:  Astrophysical Sciences & Technology Ph.D. Dissertation Defense: David Principe 
Dec. 16, 2013: 2013-14 NYSG/AST Graduate Student Fellowships awarded to Dennis Bowen, Ian Ruchlin and Dmitry Vorobiev. 
March 18, 2013: RIT Astrophysics Students Explore the Solar System at the Harley School
Feb. 15, 2013: RIT scientists comment on meteor explosion
Jan. 9, 2013: NASA awards RIT $1.1 million to develop infrared detectors for space missions
Dec 10, 2012: Supermassive Black Hole Powers 'Beautiful' Jets in 'Hercules A' Galaxy
Nov 12, 2012: AST Student Wins Time with Two NASA Observatories
Oct 10, 2012: X-ray Imaging Survey of Dying Stars is `Uncharted Territory'
Sept 17, 2012: CCRG and NTID collaborate on astrophysics inspired dance piece
July 26, 2012: RIT Leads Development of Next-generation Infrared Detectors
July 3, 2012: A Young Star Flaunts its X-ray Spots in McNeil's Nebula
Nov 21, 2011: First grads get feet wet as scientists
Nov 10, 2011: Student wins prestigious NASA fellowship; spends fall at Goddard Space Flight Center
Nov 2, 2011: Mysterious Absorption Lines Could Illuminate 90-year Puzzle
Sept 2011: RIT's New "Star" Researcher
Sept 7, 2011: Carving out a science career one post-doctoral fellowship at a time
May 20, 2011: First Two AST PhD's "hooded"
Apr 26, 2011: RIT Astrophysicist Wins Prestigious Fellowship
Nov 29, 2010: First PhD in Astrophysical Sciences & Technology wins award
Nov 17, 2010: Pushing Black-Hole Mergers to the Extreme
    (see also 'David and Goliath' Black Hole Clashes Analyzed)
Nov 15, 2010: Scientists Use Light Signatures to Track Merging Supermassive Black Holes
    (see also Black Holes Merge With a Flash of Light)
Sep 15, 2010: RIT astronomers discover cannibal star 
July 26, 2010: AST students win best presentation awards at 2010 Graduate Research Symposium 
July 22, 2010: RIT professor develops planet-hunting technology for NASA 
May 25, 2010: Hubble Research Reveals "Wandering" Black Hole 
May 1, 2010: New Wave Astronomy YouTube video
Jan 27, 2010: A Massive Star is Born: RIT astronomer peers into stellar nursery
Dec 8, 2009: RIT Astronomer Mines Spitzer Space Telescope Data for Massive Starbursts
Dec 3, 2009: RIT Professor Recognized by the American Physical Society
Oct 19, 2009: RIT Scientists Use Supercomputers to 'See' Black Holes
Oct 8, 2009: Youtube Video of RIDL on The History Channel (part 2) (part 3) (part 4)
Aug 27, 2009: RIDL Student Kim Kolb Awarded Prestigious BAE Fellowship
Aug 20, 2009: RIT Contributes to Research Probing Gravitational Echoes after the Big Bang

2015 AST Ph.D. graduate finds evidence for a newborn planet around a nearby, young star

January, 2016
This work was directly motivated by Valerie’s Ph.D. dissertation project, in which she obtained very similar Gemini Planet Imager results for another nearby, young star (V4046 Sgr).
Observations from the Gemini Planet Imager confirm the presence of a gap in the dusty disk surrounding the nearby star TW Hydrae. Click for a full view! [Adapted from Rapson et al. 2015]

RIT scientists have long reached for the stars

April 11, 2016

Four AST program faculty and their research team contributed to LIGO’s breakthrough discovery, which detected signals emitted from a black-hole collision 1.3 billion light years away. RIT’s LIGO team is preparing for the first-ever black-hole census when LIGO begins its second operational run this summer. Full Article

From Left: Carlos Lousto, Richard O'Shaughnessy, Manuela Campanelli & John Whelan. 

AST Graduate Students perform well at graduate symposium

April 8, 2016

Graduate Research Symposium offers students a chance to share their findings 

AST graduate students presented 12 talks at the RIT Graduate Research and Creativity Symposium.  AST Students: Jake Lange, Brennan Ireland, Harry Zhang and Alexander Rasskazov  participated in the panel discussion on Gravitational Waves. 

Zach Silberman won the best oral presentation award
Andrew Lipnicky was the runner up for the oral presentation award
Kevin Cooke won the honorable mention



RIT AST Graduate Students & Faculty among group whose work confirms Einstein’s theories November 2015

Feb. 11, 2016
Detection by international LIGO Collaborative opens new window on the universe with detection of gravitational waves from colliding black holes 

RIT CCRG researchers who contributed to this amazing discovery include AST Students: Jam Sadiq, Brennan Ireland, Yuanhao (Harry) Zhang, Dennis Bowen, Jake Lange, & Zachary Silberman and AST Faculty: John Whelan, Jason Nordhaus, Carlos Lousto, Manuela Campanelli, Johsua Faber, & Yosef Zlochower.  Also including Physics Undergradute student Monica Rizzo. 


AST Faculty & Student participate in Evan Dawson's Monthly Science Roundtable

Feb. 1, 2016

RIT's Senior Lecturer Brian Koberlein, Professor Michael Richmond, and Ph.D. student Kevin Cooke join radio host Evan Dawson's Monthly Science Roundtable for adiscussion about a possible Planet Nine beyond the orbit of Pluto. The evidence for the claim as well as possible problems with the evidence are examined as they take questions from the audience about the claim and planetary science.