Dr. Rocky Kolb // Public Lecture

“Mysteries of the Dark Universe”

Saturday 4:00 pm :: Mitchell Physics Lecture Halls (MPHY 203 – MPHY 205)


Ninety-five percent of the universe is missing! We can only identify the composition of five percent of the total mass and energy in the universe. Twenty-five percent of the cosmic mass-energy is in a mysterious substance called dark matter, which holds together galaxies and other cosmic structures, while seventy percent is in an even more mysterious form called dark energy, which seems to act as a repulsive gravitational force driving the expansion of the universe. Unlocking the mysteries of dark matter and dark energy will illuminate the nature of space and time and connect the quantum with the cosmos.


About Rocky Kolb

Edward (Rocky) Kolb is Dean of the Division of the Physical Sciences at the University of Chicago and the Arthur Holly Compton Distinguished Service Professor of Astronomy and Astrophysics, and is a member of the Enrico Fermi Institute and the Kavli Institute for Cosmological Physics. He currently serves on the boards of the Adler Planetarium and the Toyota Technological Institute of Chicago.

The field of Kolb’s research is the application of elementary-particle physics to the very early Universe, including cosmic inflation models, gravitational production of particles, particle dark matter, ultra-high energy cosmic rays, and using particle accelerators to recreate conditions after the big bang. In addition to over 200 scientific papers, he is a co-author of The Early Universe, the standard textbook on particle physics and cosmology, and his book for the general public, Blind Watchers of the Sky, received the 1996 Emme Award of the American Aeronautical Society.

Kolb is a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and a Fellow of the American Physical Society. He was the recipient of the 2003 Oersted Medal of the American Association of Physics Teachers for notable contributions to the teaching of physics, the 1993 Quantrell Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching at the University of Chicago, and the 2009 Excellence in Teaching Award from the University’s Graham School of Continuing Liberal and Professional Studies.

A native of New Orleans, Kolb earned his bachelor’s degree from the University of New Orleans in 1973 and his doctorate in physics from the University of Texas, Austin, in 1978. He holds an honorary degree, Doctor Honoris Causa, from the University of Lyon, France.

Rocky Kolb