The Brightest of CAS

April 14 - Student Academic Success Services and Support

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Ethan Avery and Savannah WoodsPhysics Students and SOFIA

Ethan Avery (graduate PhD) and Savannah Woods (undergraduate) flew inside the Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy (SOFIA, https://www.sofia.usra.edu/). They obtained high resolution infrared images of galaxies with two active supermassive black holes.

The students performed astronomical observations of accreting supermassive black holes on board of the Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy (SOFIA). SOFIA is a 2.7 meter telescope carried aboard a Boeing 747SP aircraft. Flight operations are being conducted out of the NASA Armstrong Flight Research Center in Palmdale, California.

The observing altitudes of SOFIA are between 37,000 and 45,000 feet, above 99% of the water vapor in the Earth's atmosphere. The telescope is located in an open cavity in the rear section of the aircraft, with a view out of the port side. The telescope and instruments provide imaging and spectroscopic capabilities in the 0.3-1600 µm wavelength range, making SOFIA one of the premier infrared/sub-millimeter astronomical facilities. 

(photo top: Ethan Avery and Savannah Woods inside SOFIA, bottom: image of black holes)

Learn more about SOFIA at the NASA website. 

Department of Psychology

Alton "Jay" Withers, a first-year doctoral student in clinical psychology, has been awarded an NIH Diversity Fellowship award to support his research on behavioral economic factors that influence risk for alcohol misuse among African American emerging adults in the Memphis community. The grant will provide Jay with $70,000 over two years to support the project and his advanced training in addiction research. His mentors will include three faculty members from the UofM (Drs. Jim Murphy, Kris Berlin, and Rosie Bingham Davis), and James MacKillop, who is the Peter Boris Chair in Addictions Research from McMaster University in Canada. I am delighted to see Jay receiving support for this important work.

Past Accomplishments