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Department of Physics and Astronomy


These lectures feature speakers from around the country and globe. Each colloquium lasts about an hour and gives you a deeper understanding of the types of physics and astronomy researching going on around the world.

Colloquia will be held in a hybrid format and a recurring Zoom link is provided to access the virtual format.

If you are interested in being added to our e-mail distribution list regarding upcoming colloquia, please contact Ms. Nancy Kesar via e-mail at We appreciate your interest!

Upcoming Colloquia (Spring 2024):

Toward Measuring the Stiffness of Blood Clots Using Magnetomotive Ultrasound


Heart disease is the leading cause of death in the United States, and over 15% of those deaths are the result of blood clots. Medical ultrasound is a versatile, safe, rapid, and cost-effective imaging technique that is typically used to both diagnose and monitor the treatment of these clots. Yet ultrasound is limited in its ability to measure clot stiffness, which is a clinically relevant parameter that can be crucial for assessing risk and making therapeutic decisions. Luckily, physics holds a possible solution! Toward the goal of an ultrasound-based system capable of quantitatively measuring blood clot stiffness, I conduct research using a contrast-enhanced imaging method called magnetomotive ultrasound. In this technique, magnetic nanoparticles are used as a contrast agent to label regions of interest (such as blood clots) within the imaging area. A time-varying magnetic force then causes the nanoparticles, and thus any possible clots, to oscillate. The amplitude of this oscillation is small enough to be safe for the patient, but large enough to be detected via ultrasound, thus providing a unique signature that indicates the magnetically labeled regions. Importantly, this characteristic motion also carries information that I use to make stiffness measurements. This talk will focus on my current progress and future goals toward developing a magnetomotive ultrasound elastometry system.

Spring 2024 Calendar:



Title of Colloquium Talk

4/11/24 Ben Levy Toward Measuring the Stiffness of Blood Clots Using Magnetomotive Ultrasound

Past Colloquia:

April 04, 2024 - Dr. Yong Zhang
"II-VI Based Organic-Inorganic Hybrid Superlattices: Structures, Properties, and Stability"

March 28, 2024 - Dr. Wolfgang Christian
"How computers improve physics teaching through interactive engagement"

March 21, 2024 - Dr. Kirill Belashchenko
"Spin transport and spin-orbit torque in metallic heterostructures"

March 18, 2024 - Dr. Nikole Nielsen
"Revealing the Hidden Gaseous Ecosystem Around Galaxies over 10 Billion Years"

March 14, 2024 - Dr. Enrique Lopez-Rodriguez
"The effect of magnetic field on galaxy evolution"

March 11, 2024 - Dr. Andrey Vayner
"Probing Key Drivers of Massive Galaxy Formation in the Distant Universe with NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope"

February 29, 2024 - Dr. Ievgen Lavrukhin
"Probing the Proton’s Inner Structure"

February 26, 2024 - Dr. Ye Tian
"Exploring the Structure of Matter via Electron Scattering Experiments at JLab"

February 22, 2024 - Dr. Pawel Nadel-Turonski
"Imaging the strong fields inside nucleons and nuclei"

February 19, 2024 - Dr. Kin Chung Fong
"Turning quantum materials into novel quantum technologies"

February 15, 2024 - Dr. Shafayat Hossian
"Room-temperature and many-body quantum states in topological materials"

February 8, 2024 - Dr. Martin Lonsky
"Skyrmions in Magnetic Multilayers for Novel Memory and Computing Applications"

April 20, 2023 - Dr. Sebastian König
"Nuclear Physics in a Box"

April 13, 2023 - Dr. Qui Wang
"Onsager Principle, Mathematical Modeling, and Numerical Algorithm Design"

April 06, 2023 - Dr. Maxim Tsoi
"Antiferromagnetic Spintronics: from Metals to Functional Oxides"

March 23, 2023 - Dr. David Tanner
"Shining Light Through Walls:  Generation and Detection of Axions with ALPS II"

March 16, 2023 - Dr. Kai Schweda
"The ALICE Experiment at the Large Hadron Collider"

March 02, 2023 - Dr. John Singleton
"Neutral Fermions and a New State of Matter: Weird Metals Disguised as Electrical Insulators"

February 23, 2023 - Dr. George Androulakis
"An Excursion into Quantum Information, with Highlights from Some of My Latest Research"

February 16, 2023 - Dr. Christopher Jarzynski
"Scaling Down the Laws of Thermodynamics"

February 9, 2023 - Dr. Ed Cackett
"Mapping the Accretion Disk Around Supermassive Black Holes"

February 2, 2023 - Dr. Alexander Monin
"XXI Century Challenges of Theoretical Physics"

January 26, 2023 - Dr. Lori Ziolkowski
"The Physics of Climate Change"

January 19, 2023 - Dr. Joseph E. Johnson
"Riemannian Geometry Framed as a Generalized Lie Algebra to Incorporate General Relativity with Quantum Theory"

November 17, 2022 - Dr. Ignatios Antoniadis
"Challenges in Particle Physics and Cosmology"

November 10, 2022 - Dr. Gang Cao
"Power and Control of Internal Loop Currents in an Exotic Quantum State"

November 3, 2022 - Dr. Shmuel Nussinov
"Dark Matter - or Matter in the Dark?"

October 27, 2022 - Dr. Mariama Rebello de Sousa Dias
"Advancements in the Design of Optical Components for Efficient Optoelectronic Devices Operating at High Temperature"

October 20, 2022 - Dr. Bob Bernstein
"Charged Lepton Flavor Violation and the Mu2e Experiment"

October 6, 2022 - Dr. Paul Reimer
"Exploring the Flavor Asymmetry of Antimatter in the Proton"

September 29, 2022 - Dr. Michael Dickson
"Anthropic Principles, Fine-Tuning Arguments, and Other Mistakes"

September 22, 2022 - Dr. Alexander Yankovsky
"Dynamics of Coastal Buoyancy Currents"

September 15, 2022 - Dr. Alexey Petrov
"Charming Asymmetry Between Matter and Antimatter"

December 2, 2021 - Dr. Jeffrey Hazboun
"Searching for Nanohertz Gravitational Waves with a Galactic-Scale Detector"

November 18, 2021 - Dr. David Ceperley
"The Physics of Dense Hydrogen"

November 11, 2021 - Mr. Travis Dore
"The Quark Gluon Plasma:  Exploring a Physics Crossroads"

November 4, 2021 - Dr. Frank T. Avignone, III
"The Search for the Majorana Neutrino Under an Italian Mountain"

October 14, 2021 - Dr. Jerome Goldstein
"Is Diffusion Described by the Heat Equation or the Damped Wave Equation"?

September 16, 2021 - Dr. Robert Cava
"Finding New Materials - A Chemical Perspective"

April 29, 2021 - Dr. Michael Susner
"Functional Van der Waals Materials:  A New Avenue for Next-Generation Electronics"

April 1, 2021 - Dr. James Tour
"Flash Graphene"

March 18, 2021 - Dr. Hariharan Srikanth
"Anisotropic Magnetic Particles for Nanomedicine Applications"

March 11, 2021 - Dr. Rongying Jin
"Topological Physics:  Entering a New Era of Fundamental Science"

March 4, 2021 - Dr. Luis Balicas
"Two-Dimensional and Topological Materials Research at the NHMFL"

January 21, 2021 - Dr. Larry Ford
"Quantum Energy Density Fluctuations"

November 19, 2020 - Dr. Pawel Mazur
"On the Physical Nature of Super-Compact Objects in the Merging Binaries Discovered by Gravitational Wave Detectors"

November 12, 2020 - Dr. Michael Osofsky
"Engineering Superconductivity in Metamaterials"

October 22, 2020 - Dr. Rocky Kolb
"Schrödinger’s Alarming Phenomenon"

October 8, 2020 - Dr. Yuriy Pershin
"Are Resistance Switching Memories Memristors?"

February 27, 2020 - Dr. Thomas Crawford, Dr. Scott Crittenden, and Dr. Yanwen Wu
"Research Directions at the SmartState Center for Experimental Nanoscale Physics (Experimental)"

February 20, 2020 - Dr. Yaroslaw Bazaliy and Dr. Yuriy Pershin
"Research Directions at the SmartState Center  for Experimental Nanoscale Physics (Theoretical)"

February 13, 2020 - Dr. Ward Plummer
"Quantum Materials Driven Renaissance in Surface Physics"

February 6, 2020 - Dr. Smita Mathur
"The Warm-Hot Circumgalactic Medium"

January 30, 2020 - Dr. Richard Creswick
"A Laboratory Search for Axions/ALPS"

December 5, 2019 - Dr. William E. Mustain
"Founding and Emerging Materials for Li-ion Batteries"

November 21, 2019 - Dr. Dennis Bodewits
"Atomic and Molecular Physics of Comets"

November 14, 2019 - Dr. Daniel Scolnic
"New Excitement in Measurements of Dark Energy and the Hubble Constant"

October 31, 2019 - Dr. Varsha Kulkarni
"Extrasolar Planets:  Understanding Earth's Place in the Cosmos"

October 3, 2019 - Dr. J. Michael Shull
"Where Do Galaxies End"?

September 26, 2019 - Dr. Craig Group
"A Renaissance for Muon Physics:  (Who Ordered That?)"

September 19, 2019 - Dr. Peter Mättig
"Beyond the Higgs:  LHC Physics in the Light of Philosophy"

September 5, 2019 - Dr. Revaz Ramazashvili
"Zeeman Spin-Orbit Coupling and Magnetic Quantum Oscillations in Antiferromagnetic Conductors"

May 7, 2019 - Dr. Laurie E. McNeil
"Transforming Teaching and Learning:  Self-Renewal and Institution-Building"

April 25, 2019 - Dr. Megan Donahue
"The Role of Supermassive Black Holes in the Growth of Galaxies"

April 18, 2019 - Dr. Monique Aller
"Investigating the Dust Grains in Galaxies Using Quasar Absorption Systems"

April 11, 2019 - Dr. Massimiliano Di Ventra
"Memcomputing:  Leaveraging Memory and Physics to Compute Efficiently"

April 4, 2019 - Dr. Leonid Pryadko
"Quantum Computation and Quantum Error Correction:  A Contemporary Overview"

March 28, 2019 - Dr. Oleg Tchernyshyov
"Mechanics of Magnetic Solitons"

March 21, 2019 - Dr. Ashot Gasparian
"The Proton Radius: Preliminary Results from the PRad Experiment"

March 7, 2019 - Dr. Raul Briceno
"The Exotic World of Quarks and Gluons"

March 4, 2019 - Dr. Alexander Monin
"Current Challenges of Particle Physics and How to Address Them"

February 28, 2019 - Dr. Karen Livesey
"Magnetization Relaxation in Magnetic Nanoparticle Systems"

February 25, 2019 - Dr. Andrey Katz
"Beyond the Standard Model:  Search for a Shadow World"

February 18, 2019 - Dr. Kimberly Boddy
"Unraveling the Structure of Dark Matter Throughout Cosmic History"

February 7, 2019 - Dr. Igor Altfeder
"Scanning Tunneling Microscopy of Quantum Materials"

January 31, 2019
"Remembering Dr. Horacio Farach"

December 6, 2018 - Dr. Yanwen Wu
"Tools Made of Light - An Overview of the Ideas Behind the 2018 Physics Nobel Prize"

November 29, 2018 - Prof. Valery Nesvizhevsky
"Gravitational Quantum States of Neutrons, Atoms, and Antiatoms"

November 15, 2018 - Ms. Lisa Hunter and Mr. Rafael Palomino
"ISEE's Professional Development Program: Preparation for Effective and Inclusive Teaching and Mentoring"

November 8, 2018 - Dr. Sylvester N. Ekpenuma
"Efficient Modeling of Defects and Impurities in Semiconductors"

November 2, 2018 - Dr. Arthur Hebard
"Heterogeneous Interfaces with High-Tc Crystalline Bi-2212 for Teasing Out Proximity and Electric-Field Screening Effects"

October 25, 2018 - Dr. Marco Ajello
"The Star-Formation History of the Universe Revealed by Gamma Rays"

October 4, 2018 - Dr. Luca Guazzotto
"A Physics-Based Criterion for Nuclear Fusion Energy Production"

September 27, 2018 - Dr. Pawel Mazur
"Superfluid Universe, the Ground State in Quantum Gravity, and Gravastars"

September 20, 2018 - Dr. Frank Avignone, III
"Dark Matter from Z to A and Beyond:  The History and Status of Direct Searches"

September 6, 2018 - Dr. Nahum Arav
"Quasar Outflows and Their Contribution to Galactic-Scale Feedback Processes"

April 26, 2018 - Dr. Yordanka Ilieva
"Gluon Imaging"

April 19, 2018 - Dr. Robin Shelton
"The Clouds Around Our Galaxy"

April 12, 2018 - Dr. Vincente Guiseppe
"The (76)Ge Program to Search for Neutrinoless Double-Beta Decay"

April 5, 2018 - Dr. Yanwen Wu
"Make Your Particles And Play With Them Too"

March 29, 2018 - Dr. Dean Lee
"Nuclear Lattice Simulations"

March 8, 2018 - Prof. Sergey Alekhin
"Strange, Non-Strange, and Heavy Quark Distributions"

March 1, 2018 - Dr. Joseph E. Johnson
"On Integrating General Relativity with Quantum Theory by Reframing Riemannian Geometry as a Generalized Heisenberg Lie Algebra”

February 22, 2018 - Dr. Alessandro Pilloni
“Challenges for Hadron Spectroscopy”

February 15, 2018 - Dr. David B. Tanner
“The Search for the Invisible Axion: The Current Status of ADMX”

February 1, 2018 - Dr. Andrew B. Greytak
“Assembling the Future Through Control of Nanoscale Interfaces”

January 25, 2018 - Dr. Ronald D. Edge
“70 Years of Physics”

January 18, 2018 - Dr. Juan I. Collar
“News from PICO and COHERENT”


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