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Past News & Announcements

Previous News & Announcements

Below you will find a list of previous news and announcements. If you are looking for current ones, please visit our main News and Announcements page.

2017 News & Announcements

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DECEMBER 2017

AGU MEETING - December 11-15, New Orleans, La.
  • Supriya Chakrabarti will present the talk "Remote Sensing of the Upper Atmosphere and the Ionosphere in the Extreme and Far Ultraviolet: Results from the LITES Experiment aboard the ISS".
  • George Geddes will present the poster "Validation of O+ Profiles Inverted from LITES EUV Spectral Images"

Exoplanet Science Meeting - December 4, MIT Cambridge, Mass.

November 2017

Supriya Chakrabarti presented the opening talk "An Introduction to Lowell Center for Space Science and Technology" and two graduate students presented posters at the Northeast Radio Observatory Corporation (NEROC) Symposium Series-Second Annual Radio Science Symposium on November 8 at MIT Haystack Observatory in Westford, Mass.

Supriya Charkabarti will attend the 9th European CubeSat Symposium from November 29-December 1, 2017 in Kursaal, Ostend, Belgium

OCTOBER 2017

SEPTEMBER 2017

Physics Colloquium and Space Physics Seminar Series Schedules:

ECLIPSE News

LionoANDMatt Photo by Katharine Webster

Undergraduate student co-op scholars Matthew Linnehan and Liono Kou are pictured here with an early SPACE HAUC CubeSat model. The plan is for the satellite to be tested and completed by the end of 2017, with anticipated launch in 2018.

August 2017

Supriya Chakrabarti presented the talk "The Limb Imaging Ionospheric and Thermospheric EUV Spectograph (LITEs): Early Results" at the 2017 Joint IAPSO-IAMAS-IAGA Assembly in Cape Town, South Africa in late August.

NASA Press Release: Here we share the press release of the Nature paper co-authored by Ofer Cohen - August 2, 2017

Chandra News

NASA Press Release "IC 10: A Starburst Galaxy with the Prospect of Gravitational Waves" - August 10, 2017

PICTURE C News

Glenn Howe presented the poster "The low-order wavefront control system for the PICTURE-C mission: Preliminary testbed results from the Shack-Hartmann sensor" and Kuravi Hewawasam presented the poster "The low-order wavefront control system for the PICTURE-C mission: High-speed image acquisition and processing"at SPIE while Chris Mendillo gave a talk.

SPAC HAUC Update

JULY 2017

June 2017

Two of our graduate student researchers presented posters at CEDAR 2017 Workshop - June 18-23, 2017 - Keystone, Colo.

  • Auroral energy and energy flux derivation using multi-spectral imaging, S. Aryal
  • Preliminary Results from LITES and Model Comparison, G. Geddes

MAY 2017

Several members of LoCSST participated in "Conversation Starter on Space Research" which was held May 10 and was hosted by Kennedy College of Sciences.  The inaugural event focused on space research and featured presentations from a panel, which were followed by information discussions in small groups.

Listen to a recording of the event!

NewScientist:Neutron stars that slow down could be eating ‘backwards’ gas - May 2, 2017 - Silas Laycock, Dimitris Christodoulou, and Jun Yang "In the News!"

APRIL 2017

Our SPAC HAUC student team presented at i2i - a day-long celebration of innovation and achievement on April 28. 

Spring 2017 Symposium - Space Exploration in the Upcoming Decade: The Domestication of Space: April 21-22

Leading visionaries, space scientists, astronauts and entrepreneurs from around the globe came together for a symposium that celebrated the 60-year anniversary of the launch of Sputnik 1 and the beginning of the space age. Learn more.

You'll need Adobe Acrobat Reader to view any pdf files. It can be download for free from the Adobe website.

Advisory Board Meeting Presentation - Our SPAC HAUC student team presented their research at the April 20 Advisory Board meeting.

Forbes:Exo-Earths With Global Magnetic Fields Most Likely To Have Life - April 10

March 2017

Spring break student / faculty activities

Faculty, Students bring Astronomy Roadshow to Haiti Schoolchildren - March 24, 2017

Astronomy Roadshow in Haiti blog

Proxima Centauri News -Alien Planet Likely Can’t Support Life, Say Researchers - March 1, 2017

Congratulations to those recognized at the Faculty Symposium held March 2, 2017 at the UMass Lowell Inn and Conference Center!

  • Supriya Chakrabarti - Co-Op and Emerging Scholars' Mentor, FY16 Total Expenditures by PI
  • Timothy Cook - 2016 Faculty Award for Teaching Excellence, FY16 Total Expenditures by PI
  • Silas Laycock - Membership in Transformational Education Committee 2015-2016. Research Accomplishments and Publications
  • Christopher Hansen - FY16 Total Expenditures by PI, Inventive Contributions Faculty who contributed the most invention disclosures, patents, etc.) and Core Research Facilities contributions/promoting service
Supriya

Supriya stands with Dr. Ajoy Ray, Director outside the workshop venue.

January 2017 - Supriya Chakrabarti Visits India

Supriya was invited to and delivered the keynote address at the conference “Recent Advances in Space Technology” which was organized by the Department of Aerospace Engineering and Applied Mechanics at the Indian Institute of Engineering Science and Technology (IIEST), Shibpur on January, 16, 2017 at 3 p.m. Later that day, Supriya inaugurated the ‘Astrophel’, the Students Society for Space Club, and addressed the students on several topics related to Astrophysics and Space Technology.

LITES (Limb-imaging Ionospheric and Thermospheric Extreme-ultraviolet Spectrograph) is a compact imaging spectrograph for remote sensing of the upper atmosphere and ionosphere. LITES was built at UMass Lowell and will launch to the International Space Station from Kennedy Space Center on February 18, 2017.

LITES has launched!

LITES (Limb-imaging Ionospheric and Thermospheric Extreme-ultraviolet Spectrograph) is a compact imaging spectrograph for remote sensing of the upper atmosphere and ionosphere. LITES was built at UMass Lowell and launched to the International Space Station from Kennedy Space Center on February 19, 2017 9:38 a.m. EST.

Supriya Chakrabarti and Susanna Finn were present in Florida for the launch!  Susanna is the force behind LITES for UMass Lowell, LoCSST. Other team members include Prof. Timothy Cook and Jason Martel – our engineer. LITES will be collecting images of the ionosphere for 1-2 years and Physics graduate students Saurav Aryal and George Geddes will be analyzing the data. More details can be found on the Space Flight Now website.

Media coverage

2016 News & Announcements

Physics Today: The space weather on the closest Earth-like exoplanet - December 12, 2016

A numerical study suggests that the exoplanet’s atmosphere is unlikely to have survived the intense wind from its parent star.

For more information, please refer to The Space Weather of Proxima Centauri b, by Garraffo1, J. J. Drake1, and O. Cohen.

International meeting participation

  • International discussion of space in "Kamchia" article - November 9, 2016. The search for exoplanets is one of the latest projects of the University of Massachusetts in the US, which was presented by Prof. Supriya Chakrabarti. According to him, the aim of the scientists is the star Alpha Centauri around which suggests that there is a planet similar to ours.

Invited Space Physics Seminar - September 29, 2016

Prof. Tim Cook presented "What's up with 834" at Boston University.

Prof. Laycock and students travel to Haiti - Summer 2016

Tom Heywosz, Andrew Cozzens and Silas Laycock recently visited Haiti, where they spent a week teaching science at a school in the city of Les Cayes. The annual visit is part of their Astronomy Roadshow, which is available to visit schools in the Massachusetts/NH area during the school year. Read more in their Astronomy Roadshow blog.

Russell_congratulations Photo by Jim Higgins

SPAC HAUC PRESS

The SPAC HAUC logo design has been chosen! - congratulations to Russell Byron-Kelly!

Red and blue logo for the SACE HAUC program

Board of Trustees Dinner - SPAC HAUC Presentation - September 2016

On Tuesday, September 20, Prof. Supriya Chakrabarti and Dat Le, SPACE HAUC Student Project Manager, attended the Board of Trustees Dinner at University Crossing. Participants were interested to learn about the satellite itself as well as the educational benefits that the project is providing to our undergraduate students.

Prof. Supriya Chakrabarti received SPIE Award - July 2016.

Prof. Silas Laycock co-author on paper featured on AAS Nova! AAS Nova (aasnova.org) is designed to highlight some of the most interesting recent results being published in AAS journals, with the dual intent of a) gaining broader exposure for our authors, and b) providing astronomy researchers and enthusiasts with summaries of recent research across a wide range of astronomical fields. The article A Pulsar and a Disk can be read online.

Congratulations Graduates! - Spring / Summer 2016

Congratulations to Ewan Douglas, BU graduate student of Prof. Chakrabarti, who successfully defended his Ph.D. thesis "Advancing Spaceborne Tools for the Characterization of Circumstellar Environments" on July 12, 2016 to earn his Ph.D. in Astronomy. Also, congratulations to Prof. Cook's graduate student from BU, Meredith Danowski, who successfully defended her thesis "Enigmatic Extinction: An investigation of the 2175 Å extinction bump in M101, the Pinwheel Galaxy" on May 2 and earned her Ph.D. in Astrophysics. Meredith is working for Northwestern University on the Micro-X project, which is currently stationed at GSFC, but moving to Evanston, IL soon where she will conduct further testing and subsystems integration for the Micro-X payload to prepare for launch. All our best wishes for much success Ewan and Meredith. Also, congratulations to Samuel Fingerman who received his Master's Degree in Physics in May 2016! Sam will be working on his research this summer under Supriya Chakrabarti's supervision on the MISTIC WINDS program.

International Meeting Participation - May 2016

Graduate student Jun Yang and Prof. Silas Laycock attended XMM-Newton: The Next Decade which was held at European Space Astronomy Center, Madrid, Spain. Jun presented a talk "X-ray Sources in the Magellanic Clouds: Analysis of 15 Years of XMM-Newton and Chandra Observations."

April 19, 2016 - Our SPACE HAUC Student Team lead by Dat Le, presented "Science Program Around The Communications Engineering with High Achieving Undergraduate Cadres” at the Student Research Symposium

April 9, 2016 - Four of our Cubesat undergraduate researchers: Dat Le, Will Kammerer, Chuck Barbon and Jake Hulme attended the MIT Sloan New Space Age Conference in Cambridge, Mass.

2016 MA Space Grant Recipients - Congratulations Students

  • Spring 2016: Dat Le, Glenn Howe, Samuel Fingerman, and Ryan Maguire
  • Summer 2016 George Geddes and Glenn Howe

Observing Time Award - Congratulations

Jun Yang has won observing time at Kitt Peak National Observatory in Southern Arizona.  Her proposal was awarded 2 nights in October for spectroscopy with the Hydra multi-fiber spectrograph on the WIYN 3.5 meter telescope, and two half-nights in December for imaging with the Mayall 4-m telescope. Jun and Laycock are studying a nearby starburst galaxy, located a mere 2 million light-years away, in the constellation Cassiopeia. This little galaxy (only about 1/100 the size of our home-galaxy the Milky Way) is in the act of forming many new stars, making it an ideal laboratory to study a hard-to-catch phase of stellar evolution. The most massive stars (>10X more massive than the Sun) only shine for a short time before going supernova and (perhaps) collapsing into a black-hole. Jun’s mission is to find and count those newly-minted black holes in order to understand what controls their formation.

CONGRATULATIONS

March 7, 2016 - Supriya Chakrabarti has been named the 2016 recipient of the SPIE George W. Goddard Award! The George W. Goddard Award is presented annually in recognition of exceptional achievement in optical or photonic instrumentation for aerospace, atmospheric science, or astronomy.

The award is for the invention and development of a new technique, photonic instrumentation, instrument or system. The SPIE Awards Committee has made this recommendation in recognition of your efforts as an innovative scientist, a visionary physicist, a scholar of extraordinary insight, and as an extraordinary role model. Chakrabarti will receive his award at an upcoming SPIE meeting where he will present results from his NASA PICTURE-B launch.

March 7, 2016 - UMass Lowell students Will Chambers (honors college), and Patrick Ryan (Physics) presented their Astronomy Research project setting up and using the new Schueller Observatory, at the UMass advocacy reception held at the Massachusetts State House recently.

Check out these interesting links that relate to Prof. Laycock's outreach activities!

March 7, 2016 - UMass Lowell students Will Chambers (honors college), and Patrick Ryan (Physics) presented their Astronomy Research project setting up and using the new Schueller Observatory, at the UMass advocacy reception held at the Massachusetts State House recently.

Check out these interesting links that relate to Prof. Laycock's outreach activities!

February 9, 2016 - Congratulations to Jun Yang who received the American Astronomical Society international travel award.

Poster presentation: Derivation of Auroral Energy and Energy Flux using Simultaneous Multispectral Imaging, Saurav Aryal, Kuravi Hewawasam, Ryan Maguire, Susanna C. Finn, Timothy Cook, Jason Martel, Jeffrey L. Baumgardner and Supriya Chakrabart.

Saurav Aryal presents his poster at the Fall AGU meeting.

Fall AGU Meeting participation

Three posters were presented at the December meeting in SFO:

  • Derivation of Auroral Energy and Energy Flux using Simultaneous Multispectral Imaging, Saurav Aryal, Kuravi Hewawasam, Ryan Maguire, Susanna C. Finn, Timothy Cook, Jason Martel, Jeffrey L. Baumgardner and Supriya Chakrabart
Poster presentation: Retrieval of O+ Density From Combined OII 83.4 nm and OII 61.7 nm Limb Emissions, George Geddes, Susanna C. Finn, Andrew Stephan, Tim Cook, Supriya Chakrabarti

George Geddes presents his poster at the Fall AGU meeting.

  • Retrieval of O+ Density From Combined OII 83.4 nm and OII 61.7 nm Limb Emissions, George Geddes, Susanna C. Finn, Andrew Stephan, Tim Cook, Supriya Chakrabarti
  • Coordinated Ground- and Space-based Multispectral Campaign to Study Equatorial Spread-F Formation, Susanna C. Finn, George Geddes, Saurav Aryal, Andrew W. Stephan, Scott Budzien, Duggirala Pallamraju, Cesar Valladares, Supriya Chakrabarti

7th Nano-Satellite Symposium - Bulgaria - October 2016

Prof. Supriya Chakrabarti co-chaired a session and presented a talk during the October 18-19 satcom technologies event.

2015 News & Announcements

Congratulations!

November 13, 2015 - Graduate Students Glenn Howe and George Geddes have both received MA Space Grant Fellowships!

News

We are pleased to announce that Silas Laycock, Ph.D., received a promotion in August 2015 from Lecturer to Assistant Professor in Physics. Way to go Silas! Silas is Principal Investigator of a "big data" study of X-ray pulsars which involves assembling many thousands of satellite observations, detecting all the pulsars, and building a library of computer models He also leads a multi-wavelength observing project to discover and study X-ray binaries in our nearest starburst galaxy. The aim is to unlock the role of age and environment in the production of black holes and neutron stars. Silas is an enthusiastic proponent of time domain astronomy and adaptive optics.

Susanna Finn, Ph.D., presented "Limb-imaging Ionospheric and Thermospheric Extreme-ultraviolet Spectrograph (LITES) on the ISS", S. Finn, S. Chakrabarti, T. Cook, A. Stephan, and S. Budzien at the ISS R&D Conference in Boston, MA on July 7. Please see the online version of Boston Magazine (was also in Best of Boston July print issue) to read more.

Professor David Willis talks to NESN about the science behind the Wells report- the "Deflategate" investigation into allegations that the New England Patriots deflated footballs.