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How did library research contribute to a Nobel Prize winning discovery?

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LIGO LSU Adjunct Professor and MIT Professor Emeritus Rainer Weiss and California Institute of Technology professors emeriti Kip Thorn and Barry Barish received the 2017 Nobel Prize in Physics for the first detection of gravitational waves. The recipients are the leaders of the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-wave Observatory (LIGO) that is responsible for the first detection of gravitational waves that confirms Albert Einstein’s 1915 general theory of relativity.

The LSU Cartographic Information Center (CIC), Department of Geography & Anthropology, College of Humanities & Social Sciences played an important role in determining the site of the LIGO Livingston observatory, which is located on property owned by LSU. During the late 1980s, Professor Warren Johnson of the LSU Physics Department used topographic maps available in the CIC to determine the most beneficial site for LIGO’s scientific mission. The National Science Foundation selected the Livingston LIGO site in 1992, and construction started in 1994-95.

With many LSU faculty and students being major contributors to the LIGO Science Collaboration, this year’s Nobel Prize in Physics is distinguished recognition of their work as well.

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Recent Faculty Publications

2018

Hebert, Andrea. “Information Literacy Skills of First-Year Library and Information Science Graduate Students: An Exploratory Study,” Evidence Based Library and Information Practice Volume 13, Issue 3 (September 2018).

Miller, Marty. “Sacred vs. Profane in The Great War: A Neutral’s Indictment: Louis Raemaekers’s Use of Religious Imagery in Adoration of the Magi and Our Lady of Antwerp.” Catholic Library World, vol. 89, no. 1, Sept. 2018, pp. 20–32.

Wilder, Stanley. “Delayed Retirements and the Youth Movement among ARL Library Professionals,” Research Library Issues, no. 295 (2018).

Wilder, Stanley. “Hiring and Staffing Trends in ARL Libraries,” Research Library Issues, no. 295 (2018).

Wilder, Stanley. “Selected Demographic Trends in the ARL Professional Population,” Research Library Issues, no. 295 (2018).

Ziegler, Scott and Richard Shrake. “PAL: Toward a Recommendation System for Manuscripts,” Information Technology and Libraries, Vol. 37, No. 3 (2018).

2017

Caminita, C., Cook, M., & Paster, A. (2017). Thirty years of preserving, discovering, and accessing U.S. agricultural information: Past progress and current challenges. Library Trends, 65(3), 293-315.

Dauterive, Sarah, John Bourgeois, & Sarah Simms. “How little is too little? An examination of information literacy instruction duration for freshmen.” Journal of Information Literacy, 11.1 (2017): 204-219.

Fontenot, Mitch; Emily Frank; and Andrea Hebert. “Going Where the Users Are: Three Variations on a Theme,” Louisiana Libraries, Fall 2017.

Hawk, Amanda K., “Highflying Crowdfunding: Creating a Successful Partnership with a Campus Donor,” Archival Outlook, July/August 2017: 12-13, 19. https://www.bluetoad.com/publication/?i=422988.

Hebert, Andrea & Marty Miller. (2017). Using FSA-OWI photographs to teach information and visual literacy. Louisiana Libraries, 79(3), 19–25.

Johnson, Hayley. “#NoDAPL: Social Media, Empowerment, and Civic Participation at Standing Rock,” Library Trends, Fall 2017.

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