Why does the space shuttle returning to Earth cause two separate sonic booms?
A Physics Advisory Board is created to provide advice and counsel on strategic issues facing the department.
Frederick Lamb is invested as the first holder of the Brand and Monica Fortner Endowed Chair in Theoretical Astrophysics, the department's first chair solely endowed for Physics and a gift of alumnus Brand Fortner (BS, '77; MS, '82; PhD, '93).
The Physics Van is invited to participate in the University of Wisconsin's Engineering Expo — and wins third prize!
A new building linking the MRL and the CSL is completed to house the Science and Technology Center for Superconductivity and to provide new offices for the MRL.
A core group of high-energy and nuclear physics faculty, led by Gary Gladding, initiate a massive revision of the introductory physics sequence for engineers; Physics 106 is taught for the last time at Illinois.
Assistant Professor of Physics Mats A. Selen starts the Physics Van outreach program, using undergraduate students to bring the wonder and discovery of science to elementary school children throughout central Illinois. (In the next 12 years, more than 200 undergraduates will delight more than 80,000 children in more than 500 "Van shows.")
Physics establishes, with NSF funding, a summer "research experiences for undergraduates" (REU) site program in complex systems.
Nick Holonyak, Jr. is appointed the first John Bardeen Endowed Chair in Electrical and Computer Engineering and Physics.
Laura H. Greene is recruited from Bell Labs as a full professor, only the second woman in the department to attain this rank.
The Materials Research Laboratory is renamed in honor of Frederick Seitz.
David K. Campbell, a condensed matter theorist who was a postdoc in Urbana in the early 1970s, moves from Los Alamos National Laboratory to become the eighth head of Physics. Campbell will increase the diversity of the faculty (four women and one African-American hire during his tenure), catalyze a renaissance in undergraduate teaching, emphasize outreach and public service, and greatly expand the biological physics program.
The Science and Technology Center for Superconductivity is established in Urbana (funded by the National Science Foundation) to study the materials, the phenomenon, and possible applications of high temperature superconductivity. Center physicists, chemists, materials scientists, and engineers, including theorists and experimentalists, collaborate to design and carry forward an integrated research and education program under the leadership of Miles V. Klein (Physics).
The Department of Physics celebrates a century of leadership in research, education, and public service.
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