WTAMU Distinguished Lecture to Feature Astrophysicist Shane Larson

Nov. 8, 2017

CONTACT:    Dr. Bonnie Roos, 806-651-2465, broos@wtamu.edu

WTAMU Distinguished Lecture to Feature Astrophysicist Shane Larson


CANYON, Texas—West Texas A&M University will host Shane Larson, the associate director of the Center for Interdisciplinary Exploration and Research in Astrophysics (CIERA), at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 14 in Legacy Hall. His talk, titled “Whispers from the Cosmos: The Dawn of Gravitational Wave Astronomy,” will explore the subject of gravitational waves, discoveries from the Cosmos over the past two years and the future of this new branch of astronomy. The event is sponsored by the Distinguished Lecture Series and is free and open to the public.

In addition to his position with CIERA, Larson is currently a research associate professor in the field of gravitational wave astrophysics at Northwestern University, where he specializes in studies of compact stars, binaries and the galaxy. He works in gravitational wave astronomy with both the ground-based LIGO project and future space-based detectors for NASA.

After receiving a Ph.D. in theoretical physics from Montana State University, Larson became a postdoctoral scholar at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, the California Institute of Technology, and the Center for Gravitational Wave Physics at Pennsylvania State University. An award-winning teacher, Larson has served as a tenured associate professor of physics at Utah State University and been named a Fellow of the American Physical Society.

An avid amateur astronomer, Larson enjoys observing with two homebuilt Dobsonian telescopes, EQUINOX and COSMOS MARINER. Academically, his research primarily focuses on gravitational wave astrophysics and data analysis. Larson has published more than 50 articles in multiple scientific journals and given more than 50 lectures covering astronomy, physics and gravity across the United States and Canada.

“We do not often have the resources to invite a lecturer of Dr. Larson’s caliber and visibility, but when we approached Dr. Larson, he was thrilled to share the kinds of developments he is working on with our students and community here in the Panhandle,” said Dr. Bonnie Roos, professor of English at WTAMU and co-sponsor of the event.


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