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Science News

Science News reporter James Riordon writes that by employing a new technology called frequency-dependent squeezing, LIGO detectors should now be able to identify about 60 more mergers between massive objects like black holes and neutron stars than before the upgrade. Senior research scientist Lisa Barsotti, who oversaw the development of this new technology, notes that even next-generation gravitational wave detectors will be able to benefit from quantum squeezing. “The beauty is you can do both. You can push the limit of what is possible from the technology of laser power and mirror [design],” Barsotti explains, “and then do squeezing on top of that.”


Researchers from MIT and Harvard have found that an adult’s ability to “parse the early attempts of children to talk may also help the children learn how to speak properly faster,” reports Jess Thomson for Newsweek. “These adult listening abilities might help children communicate very early and highlight that speech is a good way to share information with others," says postdoctoral associate Stephan Meylan. "That said, there is a lot of diversity in how adults and children interact across the world, both within and across different social and cultural contexts. This means that there are very likely many pathways to understanding language."

The New York Times

Joseph J. Kohn ’53, “who played a key role in extending the mathematics of calculus,” has died at 91, reports Kenneth Chang for The New York Times. “Dr. Kohn studied how mathematical functions behave in the realm of complex numbers,” writes Chang. “This field is esoteric, even to many mathematicians. But the techniques that Dr. Kohn developed have found use in tackling a wide range of problems in mathematics as well as fundamental equations in physics, including Einstein’s theory of general relativity.”


Nature reporter Neil Savage speaks with former members of Prof. Moungi Bawendi’s research group about their work with Bawendi on synthesizing quantum dots. Manoj Nirmal PhD '96 recalls how, “what I was really intrigued and fascinated by was, it was very different than anything else that was happening in the [chemistry] department.” Christopher Murray PhD '95 rejoiced in the Nobel Prize announcement, saying, “It’s extremely exciting to see that what [Moungi] built is recognized as part of the Nobel prize.”

CBC News

Prof. Moungi Bawendi, recipient of the 2023 Nobel Prize in Chemistry, speaks with CBC Quirks & Quacks host Bob McDonald about his work in quantum dots and nanotechnology. “I really want to stress that the beginning of this field, we were interested in this because it was a brand new material, it was a size region that no one had investigated before,” says Bawendi. “This was before people talked about nanoscience and nanotechnology, we were just very curious how the properties evolved from the molecular properties… to the bulk properties.”

Curiosity Stream

MIT researchers Lisa Barsotti, Deep Chatterjee and Victoria Xu speak with Curiosity Stream about how developments in gravitational wave detection are enabling a better understanding of the universe. Barsotti notes that in the future, gravitational wave science should help enable us to, “learn more about dark matter about primordial black holds to try to solve some of the biggest mysteries in our universe.” Xu notes, “the detection of gravitational waves is a completely new window that has opened into our universe.”


Arvid Lunnemark '22, Michael Truell '22, Sualeh Asif '22, and Aman Sanger '22 co-founded Anysphere, a startup building an “‘AI-native’” software development environment, called Cursor,” reports Kyle Wiggers for TechCrunch. “In the next several years, our mission is to make programming an order of magnitude faster, more fun and creative,” says Truell. “Our platform enables all developers to build software faster.”


Cognito Therapeutics, founded by Prof. Ed Boyden and Prof. Li-Huei Tsai, is using a 40 Hzlight-flickering and auditory headset to help slow the progression of Alzheimer’s and restore cognition, reports William A. Haseltine for Forbes. “A recent pilot clinical trial found that this technology is not only safe and tolerable for home use, but also has a positive impact on reducing symptoms associated with age-related neurodegeneration,” writes Haseltine.


Prof. Moungi Bawendi shares his thoughts at an MIT press conference after being named a recipient of the 2023 Nobel Prize in Chemistry, reports the AFP. “None of us who started this field could have predicted 30 years later, it would be where we are today,” says Bawendi. “And you know it’s just amazing to me. If you have really great people working on a brand new field with brand new materials, innovation comes out in directions that you can’t predict.”

The Wall Street Journal

Prof. Moungi Bawendi has been named a recipient of the 2023 Nobel Prize in Chemistry for his work and contributions to the field of quantum dots and nanotechnology, reports Brianna Abbott for The Wall Street Journal. “To understand the physics, which was the motivation, we had to create the material,” says Bawendi. “I would never have thought that you could make them at such a large scale and that they would actually make a difference in the consumer area.”


Prof. Moungi Bawendi, one of the winners of the 2023 Nobel Prize in Chemistry, speaks with Lisa Mullins of WBUR’s All Things Considered. “It's a lot of hard work, a lot of perseverance, and sometimes, you know, you'll work for a few years without seeing any results at all. And then the results come maybe just in a few weeks, and suddenly it happens,” says Bawendi of his advice to students on dealing with progress and failures in their research. “Believing in the end point and just, you know, when things don't work, learning how to solve problems and go maybe a little slightly different direction."


Prof. Mougni Bawendi is one of three scientists who has been awarded the 2023 Nobel Prize in Chemistry for his work with quantum dots, reports Sam Turken for GBH. “Bawendi said that when he first started working with quantum dots, he wasn’t thinking of the potential uses for them,” writes Turken. “He merely wanted to study them, but in order to do that, he had to create dots that were of high quality. Once he did that, their benefits became more clear.”

The Boston Globe

Boston Globe reporter Aaron Pressman and John R. Ellement spotlight Prof. Moungi Bawendi, one of the winners of the 2023 Nobel Prize in Chemistry, for his work in the discovery and synthesis of quantum dots, “tiny particles used in an array of technologies.” Bawendi noted that he was “deeply honored and surprised and shocked” to receive a Nobel Prize. He added that MIT is, “just a different place in the world. And I’m so grateful that MIT supported me through my career all these years.”

Associated Press

Prof. Moungi Bawendi was selected as one of three recipients of the 2023 Nobel Prize in Chemistry for contributions to the field of quantum dots and nanotechnology, report David Keyton, Mike Corder and Christina Larson for the Associated Press. “The motivation really is the basic science. A basic understanding, the curiosity of how does the world work?” says Bawendi. “And that’s what drives scientists and academic scientists to do what they do.”

Financial Times

Financial Times reporter Clive Cookson spotlights Prof. Moungi Bawendi, one of the recipients of the 2023 Nobel Prize in Chemistry, for his work in the production and advancement of quantum dots. Cookson notes that Bawendi “revolutionized the chemical production of quantum dots, resulting in the development of particles suitable for practical applications.”