Physics and Astronomy Department

So Million created software, published in the 

Western Washington University is one of 24 institutions in the country selected by the Howard Hughes Medical Institute’s Inclusive Excellence Program to receive a five year, $1 million grant to enhance student success in STEM fields, especially those students typically under-represented in…

Editor’s note: The following article was written as an assignment in Regina Barber DeGraaff and Melissa Rice’s PHYS 497: Science Communication course by senior Physics major Holly Christenson.

 

Western Washington University student Martin Fernandez, a graduating…

Ollie Reisman, 17, is a senior at Marysville Arts and Technology High School, and will be a freshman at Western next fall.

Western Washington University Associate Professor of Geology Melissa Rice recently attended a NASA workshop in Monrovia, California with a number of her students to help select landing sites for the Mars 2020 rover mission.

Rice, who is a member of the Curiosity rover science team that…

Curiosity, the Mars rover that Western’s Assistant Professor of Geology Melissa Rice helps to operate, sends her a 360-degree image of the Planet’s desolate landscape every morning.

As if seeing brand-new images from another planet isn’t amazing enough, the new…

The Red Planet is no longer the forbidden planet. Despite its inhospitable environs, Mars is the most explored planet in our solar system because of what earthlings are driven to find there; life, or evidence thereof. There are currently seven spacecraft missions roving on Mars, with seven more…

Aurorae aside, Proxima b’s severe space weather doesn’t create the prettiest of pictures, at least to human eyes. “We’ve seen 10 huge flares over the span of a few weeks time,” said Matthews. “We estimate the star has flares which we would consider major…

Jim Davenport, a postdoctoral fellow at Western Washington University, believes Proxima b’s biggest obstacle to Earth-like conditions is likely to be Proxima Centauri’s continual flares, which can be ten times more energetic than any ever observed on our Sun. Harsh x-rays and ultraviolet…

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