News and events

News items and events relating to the School of Physics and Astronomy.

See also our Talks and Seminars page.

News

Small sun hosts mini planet in distant solar system

Description
Scientists have detected a rocky planet that is smaller than Mercury, the smallest planet in our solar system, orbiting a solar-type star 80% of the size and mass of the Sun, according to research published in the journal Nature today (Wednesday 20 February 2013). The exact dimensions of the star, and the absolute size of the planet, were determined by asteroseismologists led by the University of Birmingham.

UK-India project set to enhance talent in atomic physics research

Description
A new partnership between Indian and UK scientists to develop talent and innovation in a progressive branch of atomic physics is now underway.

Pulsing with history - new developments in asteroseismology

Pulsing with history - new developments in asteroseismology
Description
Understanding the history of our galaxy depends on having precise measurements of the properties of its stars. This has only been possible for stars that are within around 300 light-years from Earth. However, the University of Birmingham's Andrea Miglio and colleagues have used advances in asteroseismology — the study of the interior structure of stars through the analysis of their pulsations — to show that this limitation can now be overcome.

AstroSoc and BBC host Stargazing Live event

AstroSoc and BBC host Stargazing Live event
Description
In early January, AstroSoc teamed up with the BBC to host two large events on campus to supplement this year's broadcast of Stargazing Live. These events were among several organised by the BBC throughout the country, all aimed at enabling members of the public to take part in stargazing and astronomy for themselves after seeing the television shows.

Prof Trevor Ponman won £1,876,501 for Birmingham Astrophysics Consolidated Grant

Description
Prof Trevor Ponman won £1,876,501 from the Science and Technology Facilities Council for the project Birmingham Astrophysics: Consolidated Grant 2013–2016.

Scientists design new lens with dual function set to revolutionise optical devices

Description
Scientists at the University of Birmingham have designed a lens using metamaterials that can function as a convex or a concave lens, according to research published today (13 November 2012) in the journal Nature Communications. By fabricating gold nano-rods on the glass, this new lens can magnify or demagnify objects, just by switching the polarisation of the light source.

Paralympic Gold!

Paralympic Gold!
Description
Pamela Relph, one of the University's Physics alumni, has taken gold in the mixed coxed fours rowing event at the 2012 paralympics.

A cluster of twenty atoms of gold is visualised for the first time by Birmingham physicists

Description
Scientists at the University of Birmingham have developed a method to visualise gold on the nanoscale by using a special probe beam to image 20 atoms of gold bound together to make a cluster. The research is published today (26 July 2012) in the Royal Society of Chemistry's journal Nanoscale.
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