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University of Iowa News Release

April 14, 2005

Physics & Astronomy Public Lectures Set For April 19, May 3

The University of Iowa College of Liberal Arts and Sciences Department of Physics and Astronomy Distinguished Public Lecture Series will sponsor free, public lectures on April 19 and May 3.

"Medical Imaging with Radioactivity: A View Inside the Human Body" will be presented at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, April 19 in Lecture Room 1 of Van Allen Hall by Dr. Richard D. Hichwa (left), Ph.D., professor in the UI College of Liberal Arts and Sciences Department of Physics and Astronomy and the UI Roy J. and Lucille A. Carver College of Medicine Departments of Radiology and Radiation Oncology.

"The Science of Optics: The History of Art" will be the subject of a 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, May 3 talk in Lecture Room 1 of Van Allen Hall by Charles M. Falco (right), professor of optical sciences in the University of Arizona Optical Sciences Center. In conjunction with his presentation, he will be a guest on "Talk of Iowa," WSUI, AM-910, at 10 a.m. Tuesday, May 3.

Hichwa, who joined the UI faculty in 1988, received his bachelor's degree in physics from the University of Notre Dame and doctorate in medical physics from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He currently directs the UI Positron Emission Tomography Imaging Center and leads research teams that study the physiology and function of normal, as well as abnormal, mammalian systems. His research focuses on the medical uses of radiation and radioactivity, including the development of novel radionuclide production schemes, fabrication of radiation detectors, synthesis of radiopharmaceuticals, imaging of humans and animals, and automated intelligent data analysis methods. He has co-authored more than 110 scientific papers and 15 book chapters.

Falco, who holds the UA Chair of Condensed Matter Physics, is a Fellow of both the American Physical Society and the Optical Society of America, has published more than 250 scientific manuscripts (including five with David Hockney), co-edited two books and has seven U.S. patents, most of which are related to various physical properties of thin-film materials. In addition to his scientific research, in 1998 he was co-recipient of an award from the AICA for his work as co-curator of the Solomon R. Guggenheim museum's "The Art of the Motorcycle" exhibition. With over two million visitors thus far at stops in New York, Chicago, Bilbao, and the Guggenheim Las Vegas, it is by far the most successful exhibition of industrial design ever assembled, and is the fifth-most-attended museum exhibition of any kind. The work of Falco and Hockney has been featured on the BBC, on CBS' "60 Minutes," and in 50 invited talks and public lectures in nine countries.

The Distinguished Public Lecture Series is aimed at providing an introduction to the frontiers of physics and astronomy for non-specialists, including the general public, and features prominent speakers from the University of Iowa and other institutions.

The series is presented by the Department of Physics and Astronomy, the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences and the Office of the Vice President for Research.

Individuals with disabilities are encouraged to attend all UI-sponsored events. Persons with disabilities who require an accommodation in order to participate should contact the Department of Physics and Astronomy at 319-335-1688 in advance.

STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa News Services, 300 Plaza Centre One, Suite 371, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-2500.

MEDIA CONTACT: Gary Galluzzo, 319-384-0009,