Department News

Oct 22, 2020 - Prospective Graduate Student (Virtual) Open House

We are hosting a prospective graduate student virtual open house Tues Nov 17 and Thurs Dec 3. We will have representatives from the admission committee, our Women in Physics group, our Lunar Sooners group, and our physics graduate student association in attendance.  More information about the open house can be found here

Oct 18, 2020 - Robert Lewis-Swan joins HLD faculty

Robert Lewis-Swan has recently joined the AMO group as an assistant professor of physics. Robert has expertise in non-equilibrium dynamics and quantum entanglement. Welcome!

Oct 02, 2020 - Deborah Watson selected as APS fellow

Emeritus faculty Deborah Watson has been nominated fellow of the American Physical Society "for the innovative use of group theory and graphical techniques toward the solution of the quantum many-body problem". Congratulations!

Jun 19, 2020 - OU-WSU paper highlighted in Physical Review A

A joint theory-experiment paper by the Blume group from OU and the Engels group from Washington State University (WSU) was selected as an Editors' Suggestion by Physical Review A. The theory efforts were spearheaded by OU postdoc Dr. Qingze Guan and the experimental data were taken by Thomas Bersano and Dr. Sean Mossman, both from WSU. The work explores two realizations of a two-state model in a rubidium Bose-Einstein condensate, realized through Raman coupling of hyperfine states and lattice coupling in momentum space. The difference in the two realizations is highlighted by a particularly important role of interactions in the lattice coupling case. The work can be accessed at the APS website:

Jun 02, 2020 - Maria Schutte Reports Discovery of Nearby, Young Brown Dwarf Disk System

University of Oklahoma graduate student Maria Schutte presented her findings on the discovery of the closest brown dwarf with a disk that is younger than 5 million years old Tuesday as part of a virtual briefing at the 236th meeting of the American Astronomical Society.  Read the full press release here

May 13, 2020 - Schwettmann and Biedermann receive DOD DEPSCOR grant

OU physics professors Arne Schwettmann (PI) and Grant Biedermann (Co-PI) have been awarded $584,418 by the Department of Defense through the Defense Established Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (DEPSCoR) for their research project titled "Harnessing entanglement in ultracold atomic gases.”

Award Announcement:

Apr 23, 2020 - OU Physicists Develop New Approach to Increase Performance of Solar Energy

Experimental condensed matter physicists in the Department of Physics at the University of Oklahoma have developed an approach to circumvent a major loss process that currently limits the efficiency of commercial solar cells.

Members of the Photovoltaic Materials and Devices Group, led by OU associate professor in the Homer L. Dodge Department of Physics and Astronomy, Ian Sellers, along with theorists at Arizona State University, led by David K. Ferry, have demonstrated a breakthrough toward the development of a hot carrier solar cell.

A hot carrier solar cell is a device that reduces heat losses in the material and could increase the efficiency of solar cells by more than 20%, which would be a significant breakthrough for solar energy. Although this device has been the source of a considerable amount of research over the last 10 to 15 years, the realization of a practical solution to this challenging problem has thus far eluded researchers.

This new approach, recently published in the journal Nature Energy, demonstrates significant progress in the realization of the hot carrier solar cell and the potential for ultrahigh-efficiency single junction semiconductor devices, which would revolutionize the field of photovoltaics and renewable energy generation.

Apr 22, 2020 - Leighly, Marino and Sellers receive faculty awards

HLD professor Karen Leighly received the Regents' Award for Superior teaching and Creative Activity, awarded by the University of Oklahoma.  HLD faculty Alberto Marino and Ian Sellers were the recipients of the Ted S. Webb Presidential Professorship. The award recognizes faculty members who excell in all their professional activities and who relate those acticities to the students they teach and mentor. 


For more information, see announcement.

Apr 14, 2020 - OU physicists awarded European Physics Society prize


The European Physical Society has awarded the the CDF and DZero collaborations with the prestigous 2019 High Energy and Particle Physics Prize "for the discovery of the top quark and the detailed measurement of its properties."

Several members of the OU Physics & Astronomy department are members of the DZero collaboration, including faculty members Patrick Skubic, Phillip Gutierrez, Michael Strauss, and Brad Abbott.


Mar 25, 2020 - Physics & Astronomy Offices are Closed

In order to comply with recent public health statements from our Provost, in consultation with OUHSC and the Centers for Disease Control, our departmental offices are closed.

We are not meeting one-on-one with students at this time.

Please contact via email to your individual professor or contact our Student Services Representative, Ms. Ashley Price,, or you are welcome call our offices directly at 405-325-3961 and leave a message.

We appreciate your respect of the rules instituted to keep us all safe and healthy.

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