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Research Highlights

Published: Mon, 08/07/2017 - 12:00pm

The Sun isn’t working the way we thought it did. Many astrophysicists haven't actually understood one aspect of how the Sun worked––until former senior research associate Nick Featherstone and senior research associate Brad Hindman set the record straight.

Stars like the Sun have to get rid of the heat generated by thermonuclear reactions in their centers. The Sun’s secret is vigorous convection, particularly in the outer third of the Sun closest to its surface. Like a pot of boiling water, hot fluid moves upward and cooler fluid moves downward, carrying heat outwards toward the surface of the star. For a long time, astrophysicists thought these motions came in two different sizes called granules (because these megameter-sized structures looked like grains of rice through early telescopes) and giant cells.

The trouble with the giant cell idea is that while granules appear on the Sun’s surface, giant cells have never been seen in spite of the fact astronomers have been looking for them for a long time. And, if giant cells exist, they would be 200 megameters1 wide, which is...

Published: Dec 12, 2016

The Rey and Ye groups discovered the strange rules of...

Published: Nov 22, 2016

Galaxy mergers routinely occur in our Universe. And, when they take place, it takes years for...

Published: Nov 21, 2016

Graduate student Mike Thompson of the Weber group wants to understand the basic science of...

Published: Nov 11, 2016

For a long time, there’s been a mystery concerning how tiny interactions between individual...

Published: Nov 08, 2016

Fellow Mitch Begelman’s new theory says it’s possible to form stars while a supermassive black...

Published: Oct 31, 2016

Far-red fluorescent light emitted from proteins could one day illuminate the inner workings of...

Published: Oct 27, 2016

Using frequency comb spectroscopy, the Ye group has directly observed transient intermediate...

Published: Sep 26, 2016

The Nesbitt group has invented a nifty technique for exploring the physics and chemistry of a...

Published: Sep 26, 2016

Exciting new theory from the Rey group reveals the profound effects of electron interactions on...

Published: Aug 11, 2016

Graduate student Greg Salvesen, JILA Collaborator Jake Simon (Southwest Research Institute), and...

Published: Jul 28, 2016

Physics education researchers from the University of Colorado Boulder and the University of...

Published: Jul 28, 2016

Newly minted Ph.D. Ming-Guang Hu and his colleagues in the Jin...

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