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McDonald Observatory, Oil and Gas Orgs Collaborate to Protect Night Skies

McDonald Observatory, Oil and Gas Orgs Collaborate to Protect Night Skies

Star trails swirl around Polaris, the North Star, above the Hobby-Eberly Telescope at McDonald Observatory. Credit: Ethan Tweedie Photography

The University of Texas at Austin's McDonald Observatory has collaborated with the Permian Basin Petroleum Association (PBPA) and the Texas Oil and Gas Association (TXOGA) to reduce light shining into the sky from drilling rigs and related activities in West Texas. The excess light has the potential to drown out the light from stars and galaxies, and threatens to reduce the effectiveness of the observatory's research telescopes to study the mysteries of the universe.

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Daniels Receives 2018 Regents’ Outstanding Teaching Award

Daniels Receives 2018 Regents’ Outstanding Teaching Award

Mathematician Mark Daniels is one of 27 University of Texas faculty members chosen to receive prestigious 2018 Regents' Outstanding Teaching Awards. The awards recognize innovative teaching and commitment to student success. They each will receive $25,000 in recognition of their commitment to student success.

Physicists Catch Higgs Boson Interacting with Top Quarks

Physicists Catch Higgs Boson Interacting with Top Quarks

Artistic view of the Brout-Englert-Higgs Field. Image credit: Daniel Dominguez/CERN.

The ATLAS Collaboration, an international team of physicists including Peter Onyisi from the University of Texas at Austin, has announced the observation of Higgs bosons produced together with a top-quark pair. Observing this extremely rare process is a significant milestone for the field of high-energy physics.

Gravitational Wave Event Likely Signaled Creation of a Black Hole

Gravitational Wave Event Likely Signaled Creation of a Black Hole

The merger of two neutron stars (top) that generated gravitational waves, announced in fall 2017, likely did something else: birthed a black hole. This newly spawned black hole would be the lowest mass black hole ever found. X-rays from the resulting object a couple of weeks after the merger (bottom left) and more than three months later (bottom right), suggest the object is not a neutron star, but rather a black hole. Illustration credit: CXC/M. Weiss. X-ray image credit: NASA/CXC/Trinity University/D. Pooley et al.

The spectacular merger of two neutron stars that generated gravitational waves announced last fall likely did something else: birthed a black hole, according to a team of researchers including Pawan Kumar and J. Craig Wheeler of The University of Texas at Austin. This newly spawned black hole would be the lowest mass black hole ever found.

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Meet Jacob Van Geffen, Class of 2018

Meet Jacob Van Geffen, Class of 2018

Jacob Van Geffen

Jacob Van Geffen started coding early. He loved the feeling of creating something from scratch. Before he came to The University of Texas at Austin, he knew that he wanted others to be able to experience that feeling as well. He was passionate about making programming easier and more accessible for all people.

Meet Lawrence Garvin, II, Class of 2018

Meet Lawrence Garvin, II, Class of 2018

Lawrence Garvin, II

As a kid, Lawrence Garvin, II loved football. His dream was to be like Vince Young and play for the Longhorns. But in high school, Garvin became fascinated by neuroscience and decided his path was to be a doctor. Garvin kept his sights on The University of Texas at Austin as his top school. He was drawn to its pre-med track and partnership with The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center.

Leafcutter Ants' Success Due to More Than Crop Selection

Leafcutter Ants' Success Due to More Than Crop Selection

A rare peak inside the garden of a leafcutter ant colony reveals the queen (center-left), brood, and an extensive matrix of fungal hyphae that form both the nest structure and the insects' exclusive diet. Public domain image by Alex Wild, for the University of Texas at Austin's "Insects Unlocked" project.

A complex genetic analysis has biologists re-evaluating some long-held beliefs about the way societies evolved following the invention of agriculture—by six-legged farmers.

Creating Truly Autonomous Systems is Goal of $7.5 Million Engineering Project

Creating Truly Autonomous Systems is Goal of $7.5 Million Engineering Project

An MQ-9 Reaper unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) prepares to land after a mission in Afghanistan. Photo credit: U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Brian Ferguson.

Thanks to a Department of Defense grant, researchers are planning for a future when unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) have the ability to fly themselves in emergency situations.

National Academies Makes Awards to Marine Scientists Impacted by Hurricanes Harvey

National Academies Makes Awards to Marine Scientists Impacted by Hurricanes Harvey

The Gulf Research Program of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine today announced that two marine scientists from the University of Texas at Austin Marine Science Institute (UTMSI) would receive grants totaling nearly $100,000 to assist in the recovery of scientific research efforts in the wake of Hurricane Harvey.

Paul Goldbart Appointed Dean of UT Austin’s College of Natural Sciences

Paul Goldbart Appointed Dean of UT Austin’s College of Natural Sciences

Paul Goldbart

The University of Texas at Austin has named Paul Goldbart the next dean of the College of Natural Sciences. His appointment will begin Aug. 1, and he will hold the Robert E. Boyer Chair in Natural Sciences.