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Why does this galaxy have such a long tail? In this stunning vista, based on image data from the Hubble Legacy Archive, distant galaxies form a dramatic backdrop for disrupted spiral galaxy Arp 188, the Tadpole Galaxy. The cosmic tadpole is a mere 420 million light-years distant toward the northern constellation of the Dragon (Draco). Its eye-catching tail is about 280 thousand light-years long and features massive, bright blue star clusters. One story goes that a more compact intruder galaxy crossed in front of Arp 188 - from right to left in this view - and was slung around behind the Tadpole by their gravitational attraction. During the close encounter, tidal forces drew out the spiral galaxy's stars, gas, and dust forming the spectacular tail. The intruder galaxy itself, estimated to lie about 300 thousand light-years behind the Tadpole, can be seen through foreground spiral arms at the upper right. Following its terrestrial namesake, the Tadpole Galaxy will likely lose its tail as it grows older, the tail's star clusters forming smaller satellites of the large spiral galaxy. APOD in world languages: Arabic, Bulgarian, Catalan, Chinese (Beijing), Chinese (Taiwan), Croatian, Czech, Dutch, Farsi, French, German, Hebrew, Indonesian, Japanese, Korean, Montenegrin, Polish, Russian, Serbian, Slovenian, Spanish, Taiwanese, Turkish, Turkish, and Ukrainian
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Thanking our retireed colleagues and welcoming new ones
Physics professor Ben Frandsen recently received an Early Career Award from the United States Department of Energy
Transtrum received a BYU Early Career Scholarship Award.

Selected Publications

BYU Authors: Richard L. Sandberg, published in J. Appl. Crystallogr.

X-ray free-electron lasers (FELs) are being recognized as a powerful tool in an ever-increasing number of research fields, but are very limited as to the number of experiments that they can support. This work shows that more beamtime could be made available by using `parasitic' geometries, where a secondary experiment uses the X-ray beam that the primary experiment does not utilize. The first successful ptychography experiment, a scanning coherent diffractive imaging technique, in a parasitic geometry at an X-ray FEL is demonstrated. Utilizing the CXI hutch at the Linac Coherent Light Source (LCLS), it is shown that the obtained data are of high quality and that characterizing the beam using ptychography can be much faster than traditional imprinting methods.

BYU Authors: Richard L. Sandberg, published in Opt. Express

We introduce a variation on the cross-correlation frequency-resolved optical gating (XFROG) technique that uses a near-infrared (NIR) nonlinear-optical signal to characterize pulses in the ultraviolet (UV). Using a transient-grating XFROG beam geometry, we create a grating using two copies of the unknown UV pulse and diffract a NIR reference pulse from it. We show that, by varying the delay between the UV pulses creating the grating, the UV pulse intensity-and-phase information can be encoded into a NIR signal. We also implemented a modified generalized-projections phase-retrieval algorithm for retrieving the UV pulses from these spectrograms. We performed proof-of-principle measurements of chirped pulses and double pulses, all at 400 nm. This approach should be extendable deeper into the UV and potentially even into the extreme UV or x-ray range.

BYU Authors: Brian E. Anderson, published in Proc. Meet. Acoust.

It is very common for students to struggle to grasp a conceptual understanding of radiation impedance. Often graduate students need exposure to impedance concepts in more than one course before they start to understand its importance and meaning. Instructors commonly suggest that impedance can be thought of as a resistance, ignoring the imaginary part of the impedance (the reactance), and the word “sloshing” is sometimes used to describe what the radiation reactance represents. This paper will describe animations that have been developed in MATLAB to help students visualize the motion of a spherical source and a baffled circular piston along with the corresponding radiated sound pressure near these surfaces. These animations utilize the relevant physical equations to observe the phase relationship of the pressure to the surface velocity. Thinking of radiation impedance as the ratio of a potential quantity to a flow quantity can be helpful, with this ratio having an in phase component and a component where the two quantities are 90 degree phase shifted. Quotes from several acoustics textbooks on this subject are collected in this paper as well.