Use this page to read about recent news and important events in the NMT Physics Department,
and find announcements of upcoming colloquia on a variety of physics topics.
The first colloquium for Spring 2023 will be Wednesday, January 25 (note change from
usual day and location - see below for details).
Here is the preliminary colloquium schedule for Spring 2023. This will be updated as
The New Mexico Tech Physics Department has been ranked 39th by College Factual out
of 263 schools for Physics! Read more about it here.
Physics Department Colloquium
January 25, 4-5 pm in Workman 310
Dr. Brian Kloppenborg
Executive Director, AAVSO
The AAVSO as a force multiplier for astronomical research
AbstractThe American Association of Variable Star Observers (AAVSO) is a small, science-focused
501c3 non-profit organization headquartered in Cambridge, MA, U.S.A. Since 1911, the
AAVSO and its members have worked with the professional astronomical community to
unlock the secrets of the cosmos through observations of variable stars and kindred
objects. Our current mission is to enable anyone, anywhere, to participate in scientific
discovery through variable star astronomy.In this talk, I describe how AAVSO accomplishes
its mission through pro-am collaborations, strategic partnerships, educational activities,
and data stewardship. I pay particular attention to the capabilities of modern amateur
astronomers, highlight a subset of the 220 peer-reviewed publications that use AAVSO
data, and discuss how we could collaborate to facilitate your research.Bio:Dr. Brian Kloppenborg is an astrophysicist and entrepreneur. He earned a Ph.D. in
Physics from the University of Denver, and a B.A. in Physics from Hastings College.
Brian is presently the Executive Director of the American Association of Variable
Star Observers (AAVSO). Prior to joining the AAVSO, Brian worked as a Research Scientist
at Georgia Tech Research Institute, where he served as a subject matter expert, lead
engineer, product owner, and project director on a variety of government programs.
He also ran a small business that provided data science, machine learning, and GPU
accelerated computing services. Brian's research interests include photometry, spectroscopy,
astrometry, and long-baseline optical interferometry of eclipsing binaries, novae,
and young stellar objects. His work is published in Nature, ApJ, JAAVSO, and similar scholarly journals.