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STEM Curious Properties

September 13, 2017
  

Editor’s Note: The following piece was prepared for the Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics (KITP) at the University of California, Santa Barbara. The article highlights three members of Syracuse’s Department of Physics: Mark Bowick, the Joel Dorman Steele Professor of Physics, as well as a visiting scientist and deputy director at KITP; Cristina Marchetti, the William R. Kenan Distinguished Professor of Physics and a KITP general member; and Suraj Shankar, a Ph.D. student and KITP Graduate Fellow. 

A murmuration of starlings. The phrase reads like something from literature or the title of an arthouse film. In fact, it is meant to describe the phenomenon that results when hundreds, sometimes thousands, of these birds fly in swooping, intricately coordinated patterns through the sky.

Or in more technical terms, flocking.

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