Colloquia 2017-2018


The Department of Physics and Astronomy hosts a colloquium every Wednesday afternoon in 227 Gallalee Hall during the fall and spring semesters (excluding holidays and exam week). Speakers include UA faculty and graduate students as well as researchers from other universities, research institutes, and government agencies. The subject matter ranges from information about the University and department to topics of recent interest in physics and astronomy. Talks are typically 45–50 minutes in length followed by ~10 minutes of questions.

Attendance is free and open to the public. Physics and astronomy graduate students are required to attend colloquia regularly, as determined by their advisors; more information about this requirement may be found in the department’s Graduate Handbook.

Visitor information, including directions and parking details, can be found on our Directions and Parking page.


This semester’s colloquia are listed below.  Upcoming colloquia are listed in the left sidebar of this page and under the colloquium category in the department events calendar.

Unless otherwise noted, colloquia are held from 3:45 to 4:45 p.m., with refreshments, including tea, coffee, and cookies, served at 3:30 p.m., in 227 Gallalee Hall.

Fall 2017

Date Title/Abstract Speaker
8/30 Review of Timeline and Requirements for Physics and Astronomy Graduate Students Dean Townsley
The University of Alabama
9/6* Faculty Mini Colloquia

Messengers from the extreme universe

Marcos Santander
The University of Alabama
9/13* Postdoc Mini Colloquia

Recent neutrinoless double beta decay results from EXO-200 experiment


Spintronics as an application of quantum mechanics

Venkatesh Veeraraghavan
The University of AlabamaandKei Yamamoto
The University of Alabama
9/20 3 Minute Thesis Presentations Physics & Astronomy graduate students
University of Alabama
9/27* Primary Frequency References at NIST Steven Jefferts
10/4 Atom-by-Atom Engineering of Oxide Thin Films and Nanocomposites via Molecular Beam Epitaxy Ryan Comes
10/11* Gone with the Wind? Galactic winds and star formation quenching Christy Tremonti
University of Wisconsin-Madison
10/18* X-ray absorption lines from the Warm-Hot intergalactic medium (WHIM) and the missing baryons in the low-redshift universe Max Bonamente
University of Alabama, Huntsville
6:30p.m. in NL1000
Public Talk: The Darkening Universe Nicholas Suntzeff
Texas A&M
10/25 Supernova Cosmology: Thirty Two Years of Watching Stars Blow Up Nicholas Suntzeff
Texas A&M
11/1* New perspectives on quantum field theory from string theory Christoph Uhlemann
University of California, Los Angeles
11/8 Modern String Theory Confronts Particle Physics and Black Holes Mirjam Cvetic
University of Pennsylvania
11/15* An Extragalactic Journey with Active Galactic Nuclei, Gravitational Lenses, Galaxy Clusters, and Cosmic Voids Xinyu Dai
University of Oklahoma
11/29 A New Kind of Magnetism – The Dzyaloshinskii-Moriya Interaction Vincent Sokalski
Carnegie Mellon University
Exploring the emergence of ordinary matter from quarks and gluons
Berndt Mueller
Brookhaven National Lab / Duke University

Spring 2018

Date Title/Abstract Speaker
1/10 No colloquium.
1/17 Faculty-Mini-Colloquium:

News from the gravitational-wave sky

Marcos Santander

University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa

1/24 The Small Scale Structure of Spacetime Steven Carlip
University of California, Davis
1/31 With the Higgs into the dark Stefania Gori

University of Cincinnati

2/7 Neutrinoless Double-Beta Decay and the Neutrino Steve Elliott
Los Alamos National Laboratory
2/14 Magnetized strange quark stars anisotropy of emission of neutrinos, consequence Dr. Aurora Martinez

ICIMAF, Havana, Cuba

2/21 Searching for neutrinoless double beta decay with CUORE Brian Fujikawa
Lawrence Berkeley National Lab
2/28 Understanding Massive Stellar Death: Predictive Simulation of Core-collapse Supernovae Sean Couch
Michigan State
3/7 The ongoing hunt for supermassive black hole binaries Jessie Runnoe

University of Michigan

3/21 Materials in Extreme Environments: Unlocking New Materials Physics in High Magnetic Fields

(What Can Modeling Chemical Abundance Ratio Distributions in Dwarf Galaxies Tell Us? -Cancelled)

David Hilton

University of Alabama, Birmingham

( Duane Lee Vanderbilt/MIT -Cancelled)

3/28 Structural Tuning of Orbital and Spin Order in Frustrated Antiferromagnets Christianne Beekman

Florida State University

4/4 Small is different: Electron dynamics at surfaces and nanostructures Godfrey Gumbs
4/11 Unsolved Problems with the Extrasolar Planets

Phil Arras
University of Virginia
Russell Hall 159, 6:30 PM4/18


Colloquium: The Magnetocaloric Effect

Robert D. ShullNIST
4/25 Optimizing MRAM: a computational exploration of spin Hall materials and 2D half metals Derek Stewart

HGST/Western Digital

Previous Years’ Colloquia