Dec. 13, 2023
UCI Digest
Eucalyptus trees provide mottled shade in front of the Information and Computer Sciences building. (Photo: Sia Aggarwal)


Researchers find exoplanet that appears to be too big for its sun

 artistic rendering shows the possible view from LHS 3154b toward its low-mass star, LHS 3154. The relative sizes of the exoplanet and star are causing astronomers to reevaluate previous assumptions about planet and solar system formation.
A research team including UCI astronomers has discovered an exoplanet that is far too massive for its sun, casting doubt on what was previously understood about the formation of planets and their solar systems. Using the Habitable Zone Planet Finder instrument connected to the Hobby-Eberly Telescope at McDonald Observatory in Texas, the researchers detected planet LHS 3154b, which is 13 times more massive than Earth, orbiting the “ultracool” star LHS 3154, which is nine times less massive than our sun. The finding is the subject of a paper published today in Science.

2 UCI researchers named fellows by National Academy of Inventors

Guann-Pyng (G.P.) Li (left in photo) and David Reinkensmeyer
The National Academy of Inventors has named two UCI researchers as fellows: Guann-Pyng (G.P.) Li (left in photo), a pioneer in the development of microelectronics for advanced health and sustainable energy applications, and David Reinkensmeyer, who combines robotics and neuroscience to create devices to help people with movement rehabilitation after neurological injury. “We are extremely proud of this recognition,” said Hal Stern, UCI provost and executive vice chancellor. “Professors Li and Reinkensmeyer have spent their careers at UC Irvine developing technological innovations that address critical societal needs in health, energy and the environment. Their work moving basic research into applications serves as excellent examples of the benefits of the modern research university.”


Linda Eder: Christmas Stays the Same
Friday, 8 p.m. (sponsored by Irvine Barclay Theatre)

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Student’s against-all-odds academic journey inspires farmworker research

Juan Carlos Ruiz Malagon stands next to presentation
Not one, not two, but six scholarships have been awarded to Juan Carlos Ruiz Malagon, a doctoral student in his second year of his 5-year journey towards earning a Ph.D. degree in Public Health. Originally from Mexico, Ruiz Malagon and his family immigrated to the Central Valley of California when he was seven years old. Many of his family members are laborers and farm workers, none of whom have attended college. “Farmworkers, like my family, are essential to the nation’s food supply, yet we have limited social support services that contribute to the disparities we face socially, economically, and politically,” says Ruiz Malagon. “Through this study, the team and I will capture the lived experiences of farmworkers to assess how structural violence is manifesting within occupational settings and beyond.”
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Note: Some news sites require subscriptions to read articles. The UCI Libraries offer free subscriptions to The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Orange County Register and The Washington Post for students, faculty and staff.
BBC logo

The impact of bad news, compassion fatigue, and the psychology of whistleblowing

BBC - All in the Mind, Dec. 12
Cited: Roxane Cohen Silver, Distinguished Professor of psychological science, medicine and public health

San Francisco Chronicle logo

College campuses can’t ban hateful speech but there are other ways to combat it

San Francisco Chronicle, Dec. 12
Co-author: Chancellor Howard Gillman

The San Diego Union-Tribune logo

Climate change imperils San Diego County’s coastal rail corridor, panelists say

The San Diego Union-Tribune, Dec. 11
Cited: Sarah Catz, research associate and lecturer of urban planning and public policy

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