News

Could Alien Life Spread 'Like a Virus' to the Stars?

Could Alien Life Spread 'Like a Virus' to the Stars?

August 31, 2015
"As astronomical techniques become more advanced, a team of astrophysicists think they will be able to not only detect the signatures of alien life in exoplanetary atmospheres, but also track its relentless spread throughout the galaxy.

The research, headed by Henry Lin of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics (CfA), assumes that this feat may be possible in a generation or so and that the hypothesis of panspermia may act as the delivery system for alien biology to hop from one star system to another."

Successful Undergraduate Field Trip to Hawaii!

Successful Undergraduate Field Trip to Hawaii!

August 25, 2015

August 24, 2015, a group of Harvard Astronomy students returned from the first annual undergraduate field trip to Hawaii.  They spent six days on the Big Island, which included a visit to Volcanoes National Park and Punalu'u Beach (black sand beach), and then three nights on Mauna Kea.  On the summit they got in-depth tours of several telescopes, and attempted to use the 

Alex Dalgarno

Alex Dalgarno

April 10, 2015

We are very sad to report that our colleague Alex Dalgarno passed away on April 9. Alex was an extraordinary scientist and teacher, who led for decades the application of atomic and molecular physics to astrophysics. He conceived of ITAMP, the Institute for Atomic and Molecular Physics, and led it for many years. 

Square Kilometer Array (SKA): UK and Italy vie over telescope HQ

Square Kilometer Array (SKA): UK and Italy vie over telescope HQ

April 1, 2015

Physics World: An Italian bid to host the headquarters of the world’s largest radio telescope has been judged superior to a British proposal – yet it has failed to get the green light. Edwin Cartlidge reports:

Physics World: UK and Italy vie over telescope HQ (pdf)