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College of Arts & Sciences

Physics & Astronomy Faculty Expertise


Graduate students Hao Chang and Sajida Khan with Dr. Saw-Wai Hla.

Student Research Opportunities

Students are welcome to contact faculty regarding opportunities for study in the following special topic areas, beyond the department's standard curriculum.

Opportunities for study may take the form of a special topics course, lecture series, seminar, or directed reading, depending on the scope of material, student interest, and faculty availability.

Are you interested in studying a topic that does not appear on this list? Feel free to ask individual faculty if this is an option, or contact the Graduate Chair for advice.

Carl Brune

Nuclear Astrophysics
Radioactive Isotope Beams
Few-body Nuclear Physics
R-matrix Description of Nuclear Reactions
Detection of Neutrons, Gamma Rays, and Charged Particles

Horacio Castillo

Supercooled Liquids and Glasses
Non-equilibrium Statistical Mechanics
Soft Condensed Matter Physics (including Polymers, Colloids, Foams, Granulars)

Gang Chen

X-ray Characterization of Materials
Nanostructured Materials by Self Assembly
Glass and Disordered Materials

Ryan Chornock

Cosmic Explosions (particularly supernovae and gamma-ray bursts)
Black Holes Time-domain astrophysics
Observational extragalactic astronomy

Douglas Clowe

Topics in Cosmology (Dark Energy, Dark Matter, Structure Formation)
Gravitational Lensing
Astronomical Data Reduction

David Drabold

Practical Electronic Structure
Computational Physics/Numerical Analysis
Amorphous Materials
Electronic Structure of Matter: Character of Electron States in Molecules, Crystalline and Disordered Solids

Charlotte Elster

Few-Body Systems in Nuclear Physics
Few-body Techniques Applied to Nuclear Reactions
Quantum Mechanical Scattering Theory (nonrelativistic/relativistic)
Relativistic Three-Body Problem
Field Theory (mostly as applied to nuclear physics)
Numerical Techniques as Applied in Scattering Problems

Justin Frantz

Computing/Simulation Methods
Nuclear & Particle Physics
Experimental Methods in Nuclear & Particle Physics
Statistics/Handling of Statistical Uncertainties
Photon Production in Relativistic Hadron and Nuclear Collisions

Alexander Govorov

Theoretical Studies of Nanoscale Phenomena

Steve Grimes

Neutron Physics
Level Densities
Optical Model

Ken Hicks

Quark Structure of Matter and Particle Resonances Particle Physics (Quarks, Leptons and Electroweak Unification) Data Analysis Software for Large Databases Mathematics of Finite Fields

Saw Hla

Single Atom/Molecule Manipulation
Low Temperature Scanning Tunneling Microscopy/Spectroscopy/Manipulation
Atomically Precise Engineering of Nanostructures Single Molecule Electronics
Molecular Machines
Molecular Superconductors
Molecular Magnetism Single Molecule Studies of Nanobiosystems

David Ingram

MeV Ion Beam Analysis of Materials including RBS, ERS, and NRA
X-ray Photo-Electron Spectroscopy
Surface and Thin Film Analysis and Modification of Materials
Academic Integrity for Teaching Assistants and Research Assistants

Peter Jung

Computational Cell Biology and Neuroscience
Non-equilibrium Statistical Physics and Stochastic Processes

Paul King

Electron Scattering from Nucleons and Nuclei
Low Energy Tests of the Standard Model
Experimental Techniques in Nuclear and Particle Physics
Computing and Analysis in Particle Physics (FORTRAN, C, C++)
Data Acquisition Hardware (NIM, CAMAC, VME) and Software for Nuclear and Particle Physics

Martin Kordesch

Thin Film Physics

Mark Lucas

Physics Education Research
Technology in Education

Zach Meisel

Nuclear Astrophysics
Low Energy Nuclear Physics Experiments
X-ray Burst Modeling
Supernova Nucleosynthesis

Alexander Neiman

Nonlinear Dynamics, Stochastic Processes
Biophysics of Sensory Systems

Daniel Phillips

Non-Abelian Gauge Theories, especially QCD
Effective Field Theories
Chiral Perturbation Theory
Strongly Interacting Systems near the Unitary Limit
Structure and Dynamics of Few-nucleon Systems
Electron- and Photon-induced Reactions on Nucleons and Nuclei

Madappa Prakash

Computational Physics
Physical Kinetics
Physics and Astrophysics of Compact Objects
Physics of Heavy Ion Collisions
Many-Body Physics
Advanced Topics in Nuclear Theory
Mathematical Methods

Julie Roche

Statistical Treatment of Data
Experimental Method in Particle Physics
Computing in High Energy Physics (Fortran, C++)
Internal Structure of the Nucleon
Low Energy Test of the Standard Model

Nancy Sandler

Theoretical Description of Condensed Matter Systems
Transport Properties of Low-Dimensional Systems
Physics of Disordered Non-Interacting Systems
Physics of Interacting Low-Dimensional Systems
Non-Equilibrium Transport through Low-Dimensional Systems
Physics of Graphene and other Two-Dimensional Materials

Hee-Jong Seo

Large scale structure using galaxy surveys
Baryon Acoustic Oscillations/redshift-space distortions
Weak lensing/cosmic shear

Joseph Shields

Nebular Astrophysics
Active Galactic Nuclei
Basic Aspects of Telescope Design
X-ray Astronomy
Interstellar Medium
Astronomical Spectroscopy
History of Modern Astronomy

Arthur Smith

Surface Physics
Surface Analytical Techniques
Magnetism at Surfaces, Atomic-Scale Magnetism
Scanning Tunneling Microscopy (STM), Spin-Polarized STM
Molecular Beam Epitaxy (MBE), Pulsed Laser Epitaxy (PLE)
Semiconductors and Metals: Growth and Surface Structure
Nitrides, including Transition Metal Nitrides: MBE Growth and Properties

Eric Stinaff

Semiconductor Physics
Semiconductor Nanostructures
Quantum Dots
Quantum Information

David Tees

Biophysics of Cell Adhesion
Leukocyte Adhesion in Capillaries
Mechanical Properties of Cells
Micropipette Aspiration
Single Molecule Forced Unbinding
Optical Tweezers

Sergio Ulloa

Transport and Optical Properties in Low Dimensional Systems
Spin-Orbit Interaction in Condensed Matter Systems
Proximity Effects
Correlated Electron Systems

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