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Physics And Astronomy News

The diamond in the center measures 1 mm X 1 mm. Photo courtesy of Delft University of Technolgy/UC Santa Barbara.

Quantum Computer Built Inside a Diamond

April 5, 2012

Diamonds are forever — or, at least, the effects of this diamond on quantum computing may be. A team that includes scientists from USC has built a quantum computer in a diamond, the first of its kind to include…

In USC's inaugural science-themed filmmaking competition, USC Dornsife's Kevin Le and USC School of Cinematic Arts' Edward Saavedra, sophomores, took top prize for their short movie, <em>Time</em>, which explains why times moves forward and never back. Shown here is Salvador Dali's 1931 melting clock painting, <em>The Persistence of Memory</em>. Image © 2007 Salvador Dalí, Gala-Salvador Dalí Foundation/Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York.

Time Flies

February 17, 2012

To learn why time moves only forward one must first understand a fundamental law of physics: the increase of entropy. The law describes the tendency for systems to go from a state of higher organization to disorder. Consider…

Daniel Lidar, a professor of chemistry in USC Dornsife with a joint appointment in USC Viterbi, serves as the scientific and technical director of the recently founded USC-Lockheed Martin Quantum Computing Center. Photo by Ziva Santop/Steve Cohn Photography.

A Quantum Leap in Computing

January 3, 2012

When American physicist Richard Feynman in 1982 proposed creating a quantum computer that could solve complex problems, the idea was merely a theory scientists believed was far off in the future. A few decades later, USC…

Skylab astronaut and USC alumnus Jerry Carr presented Simca Bouma, a USC Dornsife student majoring in mathematics and physics, with a $10,000 scholarship from the Astronaut Scholarship Foundation. The Astronaut Scholarship is the largest monetary award given in the United States to science and engineering undergraduate students based solely on merit. Photo by Jie Gu.

USC Dornsife Undergrad Named Astronaut Scholar

October 5, 2011

Skylab astronaut and USC alumnus Jerry Carr presented USC Dornsife student Simca Bouma with a $10,000 scholarship from the Astronaut Scholarship Foundation (ASF) during a public presentation and ceremony. The event was held…

In USC’s first filmmaking competition centered on the sciences, Clifford Johnson and Anna Krylov of USC Dornsife envision entries on any kind of film genre imaginable. What if Clark Gable and Claudette Colbert were scientists in the classic romantic comedy <em>It Happened One Night</em>?

It Happened One Night (in the Lab)

September 20, 2011

Envision a romantic comedy with a science-based plot. The leading roles are biologists, let’s say, working in the same lab, using Schizoaccharomyces pombe to find a cure for cancer. Love ensues, followed by some…

When Sarah Waliany of USC Dornsife discovered there was no online science magazine for undergraduates on campus, she started one herself. The lead story in <em>USCience Review</em> she is displaying discusses mercury in dental amalgam fillings. Photo by Pamela J. Johnson.

Undergrads Launch Science Blog

June 2, 2011

A group of ingenious USC undergraduates aren’t waiting for that golden opportunity to publish their science articles. They have created their own online science magazine, USCience Review, and are regularly posting…

Senior Jake Bloch created the documentary "Awe" for his religion honors thesis in USC Dorsife. The film investigates and merges scientific theories and religious pursuits. Photo courtesy of Jake Bloch.

An Awe-Inspiring Film

May 12, 2011

Senior Jake Bloch grew up seeing religion and science mixed together — right on his father’s bookshelf. Books by Alfred North Whitehead sat side by side with those by Albert Einstein, along with Houston Smith…

Stephan Haas has been a USC College faculty member since 1998. Photo credit Jie Gu.

Stephan Haas Appointed Vice Dean for Research

December 9, 2010

USC professor Stephan Haas has been named vice dean for research, effective Jan. 1, it was announced by USC College Dean Howard Gillman. In his new role, Haas will develop and lead USC College-wide research initiatives,…

Moh El-Naggar

Microbial Hair: It's Electric

October 12, 2010

Some bacteria grow electrical hair that lets them link up in big biological circuits, according to a USC College biophysicist and his collaborators. The finding suggests that microbial colonies may survive, communicate and…

Nick Warner, professor of physics and astronomy, and mathematics at USC College, shares his love of science with students in his general education astronomy class and with fans of the ABC series <em>Lost</em>. Photo credit Max S. Gerber.

Explosives, Black Holes and Dr. Who

August 17, 2010

Nick Warner leans forward in his desk chair, his arms outstretched, hands cupping the air in front of him as if protecting a small flame. "When I was 15, I had something explode right here," he says.  For Warner, USC…