Physics and Astronomy Seminar (PHY 497)

This seminar series is intended for majors and minors in the department of physics as well as other students interested in physics, engineering and astronomy. It will consist of a weekly series of talks given by visiting scientists and engineers as well as senior research students and is held in both the fall and spring semesters.  

Attendance is not limited to physics students and faculty - all students and faculty are welcome to attend.

For Zoom information to attend any of these Spring 2021 virtual presentations or if you have any questions, please contact Dr. Seth King at

Virtual Spring 2021 Seminars (All seminars begin at 3:20 p.m.)

Wednesday, February 10

The Twists and Turns of Circular DNA:  Biophysical Implications of Protein-DNA Interaction
Mr. Robert Young, Department of Physics and Astronomy, Rutgers

Wednesday, February 17

What We know and Don't Know About the Dark Matter in the Universe
Dr. Liliya Williams, School of Physics and Astronomy, University of Minnesota

Wednesday, February 24

Characterization of Engineering Materials Using Neutron Diffraction
Dr. Jeffrey Bunn, Neutron Instrument Scientist, Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Wednesday, March 3

Imaging Glass at the Atomic Scale
Dr. Kristen Burson, Department of Physics, Hamilton College 

Wednesday, March 10

Chiral Optical Properties in Semiconductor Nanocrystals and Metamaterials
Dr. Vivian Ferry, Chemical Engineering & Materials Science, University of Minnesota

Wednesday, March 17

Graphical Approaches to Special Relativity
(UWL Physics Honors Presentation)
Mr. Gunnar Schwertfeger, Physics Honors Major, UW-La Crosse

Wednesday, March 24

Mapping the Photoresponse of the Quantum-Dot Based Photon-Number-Resolving Detector
(UWL Physics Honors Presentation)
Mr. Trevor Geerdts, Physics Honors Major, UW-La Crosse

Wednesday, March 31


Wednesday, April 7

Using Thin-films to Better Understand Phenomena in Catalysis and Planetary Science
Dr. William Kaden, University of Central Florida

Wednesday, April 14

Understanding Space Radiation for Human Exploration of Space
Dr. Ryan Norman, NASA Langley Research Center

Wednesday, April 21

Uncovering the Chemical Enrichment History of Local Spirals with CHAOS
Mr. Noah Rogers, School of Physics and Astronomy, University of Minnesota