photo of emily duden

June 11, 2024

Brookhaven Women in Science (BWIS) has named  Emily Duden of Brandeis and Kali Rigby of Yale as the recipients of the 2024 Renate W. Chasman Award. Duden and  Rigby will each give a talk and receive their award at the Brookhaven National Laboratory (BNL) on Monday, June 17, at 12 p.m. and on Zoom.  

Emily’s  talk is titled “Building the future of particle physics with the new ATLAS Inner Tracker” and describes the work she did at BNL in the past year, while on a DOE SCGSR fellowship. 

 The Chasman Award is awarded annually to exceptional candidates in STEM to  honor the memory and scientific contributions of the late Renate Chasman, a noted physicist at Brookhaven National Laboratory. Her work influenced the design of particle accelerators around the world, including Brookhaven’s National Synchrotron Light Source (NSLS) and its successor, NSLS-II, a DOE Office of Science user facility.

Congratulations Emily!


Photo of Kanaya Malaakar
Physics Doctoral Student Kanaya Malakar received a prestigious Kavli Institute Fellowship

May 15, 2024

Rising sixth year physics doctoral student Kanaya Malakar received a Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics (KITP) Graduate Fellowship. The Kavli Institute is a research institute at UC Santa Barbara, and the fellowship is aimed at giving graduate students a broader exposure to theoretical physics, since graduate students often specialize narrowly and lose the bigger picture.

Kanaya's research rocuses on active matter. She says that "life has been explored in a lot of fields, but for a long time we didn’t have the proper tools in physics to do so – now we’re moving towards that, and it’s becoming a more popular subfield. An experimental system using subcellular polymers was discovered at Brandeis to study active systems in the lab. I study theoretical models of a network of springs that mimic this polymer network. The beauty of such a theoretical model is that it is fairly simple, devoid of all the details of a cellular environment, and yet it allows us to understand in simple terms what controls certain mechanical properties of the cell."

Kanaya will be working with Dr. Boris Shraiman and Dr. Fridtjof Brauns on the mechanics of organismal development.

photo of simulation

March 21, 2024

A paper by Professor James Cho and collaborators was published and appeared on the cover of Physical Review Letters. The work describes results from state-of-the-art, high-resolution supercomputer simulations which show repeated formation of a quartet of superstorms (planetary-sized cyclones, or hurricanes) on exoplanets known as hot-Jupiters. The simulations utilize new information obtained with the James Webb Space Telescope and show that the range of weather and climate on exoplanets are much broader and more dynamic than previously thought. This work has been actively highlighted by the news media.

photo of Brian Swingle

March 13, 2024

Professor Brian Swingle was awarded one of five Heising-Simons Foundation’s Science program grants for research focusing on theoretical and experimental  projects on Informing Gravity Theory in the laboratory. These projects explore how the platforms and techniques of Atomic, Molecular, and Optical (AMO) physics can elucidate simple models of quantum gravity and inform the construction of more complex models applicable to the world we inhabit. Professor Swingle’s research has three main thrusts:  information dynamics in black holes, fundamental bounds on quantum dynamics from gravity, and the emergence of geometry from entanglement.

Congratulations, Brian!

photo of chakraborty

March 5, 2024

The Outstanding Referee program was instituted in 2008 to recognize scientists who have been exceptionally helpful in assessing manuscripts for publication in the APS journals. By means of the program, APS expresses its appreciation to all referees, whose efforts in peer review not only keep the standards of the journals at a high level, but in many cases also help authors to improve the quality and readability of their articles – even those that are not published by APS.  The highly selective Outstanding Referee program annually recognizes about 150 of the roughly 91,600 currently active referees. Like Fellowship in the APS, this is a lifetime award.
photo of Steven Tarr
Physics alum Steven Tarr publishes article featured in prestigious journal

February 27, 2024

Former Brandeis Physics major Steven Tarr, BS '19, recently published in one of the country’s most prestigious Physics Journals - Physical Review Letters. His publication was featured both on the cover of the journal and as an Editors' Suggestion. His article, Probing Hydrodynamic Fluctuation-Induced Forces with an Oscillating Robot [], explores dynamics of an oscillating, free-floating robot that generates radially expanding gravity-capillary waves at a fluid surface. Steven is currently a fifth-year graduate student at the Georgia Institute of Technology School of Physics.  

Steven speaks highly of his time at Brandeis. "My Brandeis experience was a highlight of my young adult life, and I owe much of that sentiment to my time in the School of Physics. Through countless hours in the Abelson building studying for classes, conducting research with Dr. Bulbul Chakraborty, and celebrating good times with peers, I built many lasting friendships and developed into the scientist and educator that I am today. At the time, I thought the Brandeis physics curriculum was the norm. Having now spent over four years of graduate study at the Georgia Institute of Technology, I realize that the faculty and staff at the Brandeis School of Physics uniquely prepared my peers and me for life in academia beyond the bachelor's degree. I certainly would not describe my time at Brandeis as easy, but the great academic rigor and equally great kindness I experienced were invaluable. I strive to carry these traits with me and emulate those to whom I owe so much as I continue on my journey to become a physics professor."

Congratulations Steven!
photo of Prajita Bhattarai

January 23, 2024

Former Graduate Student Prajita Bhattarai (Brandeis PhD 2023) was awarded the prestigious ATLAS Thesis Award at CERN. Prajita joined the Sciolla Group in 2017. Over the years, she made substantial contributions to the ATLAS detector R&D at Brookhaven National Lab and spent several years at CERN, where she became the leading student in several  publications focusing on Standard Model physics. After graduating in 2023, she became a Postdoctoral Associate at the SLAC National Lab in Stanford, CA. In 2019 Prajita was a recipient of the CERN & Society Foundation Fellowship.
photo of Bob Meyer
In memory of Bob Meyer (1943 - 2023)

November 28, 2023

Brandeis Physics Faculty Emeritus Bob Meyer passed way on November 17, 2023. Bob joined Brandeis University as an associate professor in 1978 and was promoted to a full professor in 1985. At Brandeis, Bob was the founding director of the Brandeis Materials Research Science and Engineering Center in 2008. He articulated the philosophy of the Center, which recognizes that advances in materials science and biology have become increasingly intertwined, with progress in one field influencing the other. The Center has prospered following his retirement in 2012 by adhering to his vision.

Read his Brandeis Remembrance from Provost Carol Fierke.

photo of deser

May 1, 2023

Brandeis Professor Emeritus of Physics Stanley Deser passed away in Pasadena CA on Friday April 21, 2023. He joined the faculty of the Physics Deptartment at Brandeis in 1958, where he remained until he retired in 2005. Stanley was a towering figure in theoretical high energy physics, classical gravity, and quantum gravity.

See the Brandeis University Memorial Presentation

Read the article in the CERNCOURIER

photo of ben rogers

April 27, 2023

The Michael L. Walzer '56 Award for Teaching is given annually to a tenure-track faculty member who combines superlative scholarship with inspired teaching. A student noted that "Professor Rogers manages to understand the demographic of the course of mostly biology and/or pre-med students and still inspire interest in the subject and not discourage students with complex study material. The way he teaches is phenomenal." 

photo of awardees

February 21, 2023

Guglielmo Frattari and Daniel Camarero Munoz, two Brandeis postdocs in the Experimental High-Energy Physics group, were awarded the prestigious 2022 ATLAS Thesis Award. This award recognizes outstanding contributions made to the ATLAS Collaboration in the context of a PhD thesis. Guglielmo, a member of the Sciolla group, worked on Dark Matter searches and Higgs boson measurements. Daniel, a member of the Apyan group, performed Standard Model precision measurements involving photons in the final state. The Award Ceremony took place Feb. 16, 2023, at CERN.
photo of Rosner

January 18, 2023

Rosner is an eminent theoretical physicist and the new 2023 APS President, and his love for the field stretches back to childhood. “I loved puzzles; I always read science articles, books,” he says. He earned his bachelor’s degree in physics from Brandeis and his doctorate from Harvard and has been at the University of Chicago since 1987. He doesn't remember a time when he didn't love science. He notes that majoring in Physics at Brandeis "was an amazing experience for me."

See his APS February 2023 interview here.

portrait of Albert Einstein
Einstein portrait donated to the Brandeis Physics Department

April 29, 2022

On Friday, April 29, a portrait of Albert Einstein by Ukrainian Artist Tetyana Kolechko will be hung in the Abelson hallway. This portrait was generously donated by Dr. Natalya Proskura and Vladislav Shapiro (MS '93). Their son Michael Proskura is a member of the Brandeis Class of 2024.

Stanley Deser

May 6, 2021

Brandeis Professor Emeritus of Physics, Stanley Deser, has been elected as a Foreign Member to the Royal Society. The Royal Society is a fellowship of many of the world's most eminent scientists and is the oldest scientific academy in continuous existence. Its fundamental purpose is to recognize, promote, and support excellence in science and to encourage the development and use of science for the benefit of humanity.

Deser is one of about 180 current Foreign Members in all fields of science. In addition, he is one of only four theoretical physicists elected.

Polarised view of the black hole in M87

Photo Credit: EHT Collaboration

March 24, 2021

Professor John Wardle explains the significance of a new image of a black hole's magnetic fields.


Two types of cellular proteins - kinesin and microtubules

February 18, 2021

Researchers at the Brandeis Materials Research Science and Engineering Center (MRSEC), led by Guillaume Duclos, Seth Fraden, Michael Hagan and Aparna Baskaran, are harnessing the power of swirling cellular proteins to create self-propelling fluids.


Bulbul Chakraborty

November 24, 2020

Brandeis physicist Bulbul Chakraborty has been named a Fellow by the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the world’s largest general scientific society.

Chakraborty, the Enid and Nate Ancell Professor of Physics and head of the Division of Science, received the prestigious recognition for important theoretical contributions to diverse areas of condensed matter physics, particularly disordered systems including frustrated magnets and granular materials.

Sumantra Sarkar

Photo Credit: Los Alamos National Laboratory

October 7, 2020

Sarkar, who received his PhD working with Professor Bulbul Chakraborty, is the recipient of the 2021 Irwin Oppenheimer award from the American Physical Society. Prsently, he is a postdoctoral fellow at the Center for Nonlinear Studies, Los Alamos National Laboratory.

The award recognizes outstanding contributions to physics by early career scientists who publish in Physical Review E (PRE).  The citation that will appear on the certificate is: “For developing a theory of the emergence of self-replication in simple chemical models, and the definition of general design principles for constructing self-replicating objects.”

MRSEC illustration

MRSEC harnesses the power of organic matter to develop new materials and machines.

Brandeis MRSEC wins major new grant from the National Science Foundation

July 14, 2020

Brandeis' MRSEC program, which is developing revolutionary new types of nano-sized machines and materials, has received an $18 million, six-year grant from the National Science Foundation.

It is the third time Brandeis has received the prestigious award. This year it was given to only 10 other universities besides Brandeis, including Columbia, Harvard and Princeton.

Human Frontier Science Program logo

April 2, 2020

Professor W. Benjamin Rogers has been awarded a 2020 Human Frontier Science Program (HFSP) collaborative Program Grant to create a self-propagating synthetic cell. The HFSP Program Grants aim to tackle big questions in the life sciences by supporting and bringing together researchers with different backgrounds from different countries. 
Prajita Bhattarai

Photo Credit: CERN

March 27, 2020

Prajita Bhattarai, a Physics graduate student who spent last summer at CERN, has received an ATLAS PhD grant to allow her to focus on her research measuring Higgs-boson decays into four-lepton final states.

First photograph of black hole; bright orange glowing orbiting gas against black sky

Photo Credit: Event Horizon Telescope Collaboration

October 2, 2019

Professor of astrophysics John Wardle, an expert on radio astronomy, is part of the consortium that captured an image of a supermassive black hole for the first time in history.
First photograph of black hole; bright orange glowing orbiting gas against black sky

Photo Credit: Event Horizon Telescope Collaboration

April 10, 2019

Scientists have obtained the first image of a black hole, using Event Horizon Telescope observations of the center of the galaxy M87. Physicist John Wardle, who was part of the team that produced the image, explains why it's a major scientific breakthrough.

February 19, 2019

Brandeis University has received a $20,000 grant from the Association of American Universities (AAU) to complement and enhance current efforts at the university to foster student success in STEM.

Logo for "The Big Take: Big Ideas Explained in Under 5 Minutes"

January 18, 2019

Brandeis physicist Seth Fraden explains what active matter is and how it can be used to create machines and materials that behave like living organisms.

Professor Aparna Baskaran with a group of students

November 20, 2018

Associate Professor of Physics Aparna Baskaran has won a 2019 Early Career Award for Soft Matter Research from the American Physical Society.

Logo for "The Big Take: Big Ideas Explained in Under 5 Minutes"

November 16, 2018

Matthew Headrick explains what a mind-blowing theory in physics, the idea that the universe is a hologram.

A Black Hole

October 12, 2018

We don't know for sure because we've never been able to take a picture of one. That may all be about to change.

July 25, 2018

The Provost's Office has announced this year's recipients of the Provost Research Awards, given to support innovations in teaching and research at Brandeis. Physics awardees include: 

Baptiste Blanc (Physics), "Chemo-mechanical gel actuated by an oscillating chemical reaction"; An Huang (Mathematics) and Bogdan Stoica (Physics), "Physics from the primes"; Shashank Shekhar (Biochemistry, Biology, Physics), "Developing Stentor coeroelous as a new model organism to study the physical basis for evolution of multicellularity and organismal size-regulation."

Robotic eel swimming

June 8, 2018

Physicist Seth Fraden is developing a new generation of machines modeled on living creatures. His latest invention might one day treat disease by swimming its way through our blood.

Matthew Headrick

Summer 2018

Professor of Physics Matthew Headrick researches one of the most cutting-edge ideas in theoretical physics. It proposes that the universe is a three-dimensional image projected off a two-dimensional surface, much like a hologram emerges from a sheet of photographic film.

Professor Bulbul Chakraborty

April 4, 2018

Enid and Nate Ancell Professor of Physics Bulbul Chakraborty has received a prestigious fellowship in theoretical physics from the Simons Foundation in New York.

Illustration of two scientists examining organisms in a petri dish

Summer 2017

Under a $20 million Materials Research Science and Engineering Center grant, Brandeis physicists are creating “active” matter that could one day animate self-healing artificial organs, drug-delivering nanobots and self-mending clothes.