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Department of Physics and Astronomy

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From stargazing to great lectures. There's always something going on in our department. 


Friday, December 1, 2-3 p.m.
Jones PSC, Room 409
"Hypernatural: Architecture's New Relationship With Nature"
Professor Blaine E. Brownnell, AIA LEED AP of University of Minnesotta

Recent decades have witnessed the increasing popularity of nature-focused movements such as sustainability, biophilia, biomimicry, biodesign, and emergent design. These movements are dramatically altering the relationship between the designed environment and the natural world, and, although overlaps exist, there is no common discourse that unites these areas of study. A holistic framework is therefore needed to address these disparate areas of inquiry, the full spectrum of their operations, and their common goals and methodologies. Hypernatural addresses the ways in which design increasingly works directly with natural processes--rather than against them--in order to amplify, extend, or exceed natural capacities. This lecture is based on my book, Hypernatural: Architecture's New Relationship with Nature.

Stargazing at the Melton Observatory

Monday, December 4, 8-10 p.m.

This historic observatory on the Horseshoe of the USC Columbia campus is currently open to the public on clear Monday nights from 8 to 10 p.m., weather permitting. Anyone is welcome to come by and observe through the 16-inch Cassegrain telescope in the dome and other small telescopes on the observatory deck. See the moon, planets, stars, clusters, and more through our telescopes free of charge!