The Catholic University of America


VSL Confirms
Nuclear Waste
Cleanup Method

The process, developed by CUA's Vitreous State Laboratory, will keep the highly volatile radioactive element technetium from escaping when nuclear waste is treated for disposal.

Astronomy Grad
Gazes at Galaxies

Elysse Voyer, a 2011 Ph.D. graduate, interprets data from ground- and space-based telescopes at Laboratoire D’Astrophysics de Marseille in France. During her two-year assignment, she will analyze star-forming galaxies in the Virgo Cluster.

Students Win
Travel Award

A group of undergraduates presented their research results at a recent nuclear physics conference. The students' research is part of the design of the kaon aerogel Cerenkov detector that CUA scientists are building for a strangeness physics program at the Jefferson Laboratory.

CUA Faculty Join
'Evolving Universe'
Conference in Brazil

The conference celebrated the collaboration of the International Network of Catholic Astronomical Institutions with the Vatican Observatory in conducting research on the universe.

Professor Horn Honored
As Outstanding Scholar

She was recognized for her research on the structures of subatomic particles, and for her accessibility to students, interactive style, and service as a mentor.

Welcome to the Physics Department

The physics department is a medium-sized department with 30 regular, research, and adjunct faculty members and approximately 35 graduate students. Programs of study lead to M.S. and Ph.D degrees in both pure and applied physics. The Institute for Astrophysics and Computational Sciences (IACS) also operates through the CUA Physics Department.

Physics Majors on the Dean's List 

Congradulations to Anna Fitzmaurice (Physics) and Kiera Lyons (Physics) who made the School of Arts & Sciences Dean list with distinction and to Sean O'Connor (Physics) and Mary Zwilling (Chemical Physics) who made the School of Arts & Sciences Dean list. 


Department of Physics


Dr. Francesco Sorrentino

University of New Mexico

Cluster Synchronization in Networks with Symmetries


Wednesday, September 20, 2017
108 Hannan Hall


 2016 Space Weather Center seminar series


The Space Weather Center (SWC) in the CUA’s Physics Department launches a series of educational seminar talks focused on scientific, engineering, and sociological aspects of cutting-edge space weather research.

Space weather phenomena are driven by magnetic storms on the Sun and echoed in the near-Earth space environment. Severe space weather events present significant health risks to astronauts working in space, and may have a detrimental effect on satellite missions, navigation systems, communication networks, power grids, cross-polar air traffic, and many other modern human technologies.

The SWC seminars will provide an entertaining overview of this important research subject in a set of educational lectures delivered by leading experts from CUA and NASA. The seminars are open to all interested CUA students; faculty and staff are welcome.

Schedule of talks

October 25, 2016  (Tuesday):               

An Introduction to Space Weather


November 01, 2016 (Tuesday):            

The Science of Solar HURRICANES


November 16, 2016 (Wednesday):      

Forecasting Extreme Space Weather


November 30, 2016: (Wednesday):     

Space Hazards and THE Human Society


Location:       Rm 106, Hannan Hall           

Time:              7:00pm


Practical experience

Students with sufficient backgrounds in physics and math will be offered a unique hands-on experience with space weather forecasting tools available at the SWC through its collaboration with the Community Coordinated Modelling Center at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center.


Contact information
:          Dr. Vadim Uritsky, 206 Hannan Hall,


Dr. Lucas Paganini featured in Scientific American magazine article: "Astronomers Spy Shadowy Plumes around Europa"

"Since February of this year, Lucas Paganini, a NASA-affiliated astronomer at the Catholic University of America, has been doing just that—looking for Europa’s shadowy plumes in near-infrared light using one of the twin 10-meter telescopes at the Keck observatory on Mauna Kea in Hawaii."

Suspected plumes of water vapor erupt from the southern limb of Europa in this composite image of data from the Hubble Space Telescope and the Galileo and Voyager missions. Credit:NASA/ESA/W. Sparks (STScI)/USGS Astrogeology Science Center

Dr. Bruhweiler and Dr. Yashiro Receive Heliophysics Science Division Peer Awards


     Congratulations to Dr. Fred Bruhweiler and Dr. Seiji Yashiro for receiving Heliophysics Science Division Peer Awards. These awards recognize contributions to HSD that are above and beyond job-related duties, including:


            · Providing assistance to other members of HSD

            · Adding to the knowledge base or prestige of HSD

            · Facilitating the work of HSD as a whole


    Congratulations to Fred and Seiji for their outstanding accomplishments and contributions!



Congratulation to Dr. Colin Komar was announced as the recipient of the 2016 Sunanda and Santimay Basu United States Early Career Award in Sun-Earth Systems Science

The award is given annually to one early career scientist by the Space Physics and Aeronomy section of the American Geophysical Union in "recognition of significant work that shows the focus and promise of making outstanding contributions to research in Sun-Earth systems science that further the understanding of both plasma physical processes and their applications for the benefit of society."