Princeton Weekly Bulletin   May 8, 2006, Vol. 95, No. 26   search   prev   next

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Page One
Princeton selected as home for NSF center on sensor technology
Communiversity 2006

Four honored for their work mentoring graduate students
Diversity rises in Graduate School applications
Albright, Breyer share experiences
Q&A with Robert Wuthnow

Through images and words, Dale winner will explore Old West
Sophomores win Dale Summer Awards
Spotlight, briefs

Nassau notes
Calendar of events
By the numbers



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Nassau notes

U.S. space program professionals here for Human Spaceflight Forum

Several distinguished members of the U.S. space program, including the only scientist to walk on the moon, will participate in a Human Spaceflight Forum on Wednesday, May 10.

The free public event, sponsored by the Princeton Astrobiology Club, will feature a series of lectures from 2 to 6 p.m. in the Peyton Hall auditorium and a panel discussion from 7:30 to 9 p.m. in McCosh 50. The purpose of the forum is to start a dialogue between Princeton students and faculty with space professionals, addressing NASA’s new initiative to fly to the Moon and Mars in the coming decades.

Appearing will be two astronauts: Harrison Schmitt, a geologist who logged 22 hours on the moon as the Apollo 17 lunar module pilot; and Jim Wetherbee, a veteran of six space missions and commander of five. Also participating will be: Bill Parsons, deputy director of the Kennedy Space Center and former space shuttle program manager; and George Whitesides, a 1996 Princeton graduate who is executive director of the National Space Society, a citizen advocacy group.

Topics are expected to include scientific work, safety and the future of the U.S. space program and of space tourism. The afternoon lecturers will be joined in the evening panel discussion by Princeton faculty members Jeremy Kasdin, Tullis Onstott and Ed Turner.

For more information, contact David Smith or James Wray at

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Caterpillars of a butterfly species in Venezuela form a dense, radiating circular patch on the leaves where they feed in this photo by Trond Larsen, a graduate student in ecology and evolutionary biology, that is part of the ”Art of Science“ exhibition.


Art of Science exhibit opens

The opening of the second annual “Art of Science” exhibition is scheduled for 5 to 7 p.m. Wednesday, May 10, with a reception in the Friend Center atrium.

The juried show will feature prints, videos, paintings and sculptures — 50 works in all — produced in the course of scientific or technical research from a dozen departments at Princeton.

“Much of the work that we find so compelling may be likened to ‘found art,’” said Adam Finkelstein, associate professor of computer science and one of the organizers of the exhibition. “Researchers create images or other artifacts in the pursuit of math, science and engineering, and often they turn out to be quite beautiful when viewed as works of art. The question of whether this is serendipity, or perhaps the expression of some deeper connections between aesthetics, order, nature and complexity remains to be answered by the viewer.”

The 50 exhibited works were selected from more than 150 submissions. The entries are being reviewed by a panel of judges, and three winners will be announced at the opening. The art works will be on view for several months in the Friend Center.

‘Large-area Electronics’ is topic for Wagner

Sigurd Wagner, Princeton professor of electrical engineering, will present the sixth Plasma Science and Technology Distinguished Speaker Lecture at 4:30 p.m. Wednesday, May 10, in 105 Computer Science Building. His talk is titled “Large-area Electronics.”

Flexible large-area electronics is the fastest-growing electronic industry today. The field is dominated by flat-panel displays, which have moved from laptop to desktop to TV, and includes medical X-ray sensor arrays and thin-film solar cells. Their tremendous commercial success is encouraging research on very advanced concepts for flexible, conformally shaped and elastically stretchable electronic surfaces — human-sized integrated circuits that can be given any shape: surround displays, solar cell car roofs, electronic textiles and sensitive skin.

Wagner’s research interests stem from a career that began at Bell Laboratories, where he worked on applications of novel electronic materials. He co-invented new solar cells and established a photovoltaic laboratory at the Solar Energy Research Institute in Golden, Colo., in the late 1970s. A Princeton faculty member since 1980, Wagner is the author of more than 500 publications and co-inventor in 18 U.S. patents.

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“Big Red Truck,” by Marcia Miller


The lecture series is sponsored by the Program in Plasma Physics, the Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory and the School of Engineering and Applied Science.

University League exhibition

“Big Red Truck,” an oil panting by New York artist Marcia Miller is among the works on display at the University League office at 171 Broadmead through May 20. Hours are 1 to 5 p.m. Tuesdays and 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Wednesdays and Thursdays.

Former Nobel board member to discuss prizes

Erling Norrby, former secretary-general of the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, will speak on “Over 100 Years of Nobel Prizes” at 4 p.m. Wednesday, May 10, in 101 Icahn Lab.

From 1997 to 2003, Norrby served as secretary-general of the institution that annually awards Nobel Prizes in physics, chemistry and economics. During that time, he also was a member of the board of the Nobel Foundation. He currently is a researcher at the academy’s Center for the History of Sciences.

In the May 10 seminar, Norrby will talk about Alfred Nobel and his family, the formation of the foundation and the different prizes. He also will discuss the secrecy and process of selection of the prizes, and what Nobel Prizes tell us about creative milieus.

The event is hosted by David Botstein, director of the Lewis-Sigler Institute for Integrative Genomics.

Concert features Carpenter siblings

An award-winning trio of Princeton sibling musicians will be featured in a concert of classical favorites at 8 p.m. Friday, May 12, in Richardson Auditorium, Alexander Hall.

The concert was organized by senior violinist Lauren Carpenter, the concertmaster of the Princeton University Orchestra, as her recital fulfillment for a certificate in musical performance. She will be joined by her brother Sean, a violinist who graduated from Princeton in 2003, and her brother David, a sophomore violinist and violist. All three have been winners of the University’s concerto competition.

The concert also will feature conductor Ruth Ochs, a graduate student; pianist Christine McLeavey, a 2001 alumna; cellist Ami Connolly, a junior; violinist Anna Lim; and 30 members of the University Orchestra.

Admission is free. Tickets can be obtained in advance or on the night of the concert through the Richardson Auditorium box office, 258-5000.

The concert is sponsored by the Office of the Dean of Undergraduate Students, Undergraduate Student Government Projects Board, Princeton Undergraduate Musicians’ Association and Department of Music.

Lecture series focuses on ‘Surviving Death’

Surviving Death” is the theme of three lectures by Princeton philosopher Mark Johnston scheduled for 4:30 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday, May 9-11, in 101 McCormick Hall.

Johnston is the Walter Cerf *41 Professor of Philosophy. His areas of interest include ethics, philosophy of mind, metaphysics and philosophical logic.

The talks are designated as the philosophy department’s Hempel Lectures.

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Lillian Pierce ’02


Pierce to perform ‘Mystery Sonatas’

Lillian Pierce, a 2002 Princeton alumna who was co-concertmaster of the Princeton University Orchestra, will present a free concert at 3 p.m. Saturday, May 20, in the Rockefeller Hall Common Room.

Pierce, who was valedictorian of the class of 2002, has returned to Princeton to pursue a Ph.D. in mathematics after spending two years at Oxford University as a Rhodes Scholar. While in England, she was co-concertmaster of the Oxford University Orchestra and a member of several chamber groups.

The music world at Oxford inspired her to look for unusual performance spaces, such as the hall where she will present a selection of the “Mystery Sonatas” by the little-known Baroque composer Heinrich Biber. Pierce is a graduate fellow of Rockefeller College.

The sonatas were written in 1670 and use the unusual technique of scordatura, requiring that the strings of the violin be tuned to a unique set of pitches for each piece. Pierce will perform using several violins, including one that is 300 years old.

She will be accompanied by Richard Tang Yuk on an organ transported to the hall just for this occasion and cellist Diana Rosenblum.

Nassau Swim Club seeks members

The Nassau Swim Club, located on lower Springdale Road, is accepting members for the 2006 season.

The club, which has a newly renovated pool, gives priority to University faculty, staff and students.

The season runs from late May through early September at the small, family-oriented club. For more information and to download an application, visit: