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From the College of Natural Sciences
Chen Selected as an AMS Fellow

Chen Selected as an AMS Fellow

The American Mathematical Society has named Thomas Chen, chair of the Department of Mathematics at The University of Texas at Austin, as one of 52 Fellows of the AMS for 2020. The Fellows of the AMS designation recognizes members who have made outstanding contributions to the creation, exposition, advancement, communication and utilization of mathematics.

Twisted Physics: Magic Angle Graphene Produces Switchable Superconductivity

Twisted Physics: Magic Angle Graphene Produces Switchable Superconductivity

When the two layers of bilayer graphene are twisted relative to each other by 1.1 degrees -- dubbed the "magic angle" -- electrons behave in a strange and extraordinary way. The effect was first theorized by UT Austin physics professor Allan MacDonald and postdoctoral researcher Rafi Bistritzer. Illustration credit: David Steadman/University of Texas at Austin.

Last year, scientists demonstrated that twisted bilayer graphene — a material made of two atom-thin sheets of carbon with a slight twist — can exhibit alternating superconducting and insulating regions. Now, a new study in the journal Nature by scientists from Spain, the U.S., China and Japan shows that superconductivity can be turned on or off with a small voltage change, increasing its usefulness for electronic devices.

Computer Scientist Weighs in on Quantum Supremacy

Computer Scientist Weighs in on Quantum Supremacy

Google’s quantum computer. Credit: Google

Google announced earlier this week that a team of researchers made a milestone achievement: "quantum supremacy," or the creation of a quantum computer capable of calculations beyond the capacity of a traditional supercomputer. To put this in perspective, a number of media outlets, including New York Times, Scientific American, Nature, Quanta Magazine, BBC and NPR, relied on the expertise of Scott Aaronson, a professor of computer science at the University of Texas at Austin.

Feliciano Giustino Uses Quantum Mechanics to Create New Materials

Feliciano Giustino Uses Quantum Mechanics to Create New Materials

Feliciano Giustino recently joined the University of Texas at Austin faculty in the Department of Physics and is a Moncrief Chair in the Oden Institute for Computational Engineering and Sciences, where he will direct the Center for Quantum Materials Engineering. He was previously a professor in the Department of Materials at Oxford University.

New Material Holds Promise for More Secure Computing

New Material Holds Promise for More Secure Computing

When the two atomically-thin sheets of this new material are rotated slightly with respect to each other, an interference pattern known as a moiré pattern appears. This feature appears to enable Li’s new material to act as a series of single photon emitters. Credit: University of Texas at Austin.

As computers advance, encryption methods currently used to keep everything from financial transactions to military secrets secure might soon be useless, technology experts warn. Reporting today in the journal Nature, a team of physicists and engineers led by University of Texas at Austin physics professor Xiaoqin Elaine Li report they have created a material with light-emitting properties that might enable hack-proof communications, guaranteed by the laws of quantum mechanics.

UT Austin Mourns Passing of George Sudarshan, Titan of 20th Century Physics

UT Austin Mourns Passing of George Sudarshan, Titan of 20th Century Physics

World-renowned physicist E.C. George Sudarshan died of natural causes this week at the age of 86. A professor of physics at The University of Texas at Austin from 1969 to 2016, he made many important contributions to theoretical physics. Ennackal Chandy George Sudarshan was born in Kottayam, Kerala, India on Sep. 16, 1931. He received his Ph.D. de...
16 Inspiring and Eye-Opening Texas Science Stories of 2017

16 Inspiring and Eye-Opening Texas Science Stories of 2017

It's been a busy year for scientists and researchers at the College of Natural Sciences. Discoveries, findings, advancements and technology developed right here made news around the world. Here are just a few of the top science stories of 2017.

Quantum Computer Scientist Named Simons Foundation Investigator

Quantum Computer Scientist Named Simons Foundation Investigator

Scott Aaronson

Computer scientist Scott Aaronson of The University of Texas at Austin has been selected as a 2017 Simons Investigator in Theoretical Computer Science by the Simons Foundation for his work in quantum computation.

When Will We Have Quantum Computers? (Audio)

When Will We Have Quantum Computers? (Audio)

Quantum computers might sound like science fiction. A fully functioning quantum computer could complete calculations in a matter of seconds that would take a conventional computer millions of years to process.

Physics Professor Wins NSF CAREER Award

Physics Professor Wins NSF CAREER Award

Andrew Potter, an assistant professor in the Department of Physics at the University of Texas at Austin, has received the Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) Award from the National Science Foundation. The award will support theoretical research and education towards understanding and controlling the dynamics of complex quantum systems