National Science Foundation grant supports student-faculty nuclear research

A National Science Foundation grant will further Gettysburg College's tradition of student-faculty collaboration on research.

The nearly $120,000 grant will permit two students to work with Gettysburg College physics Prof. Sharon Stephenson on developing new instrumentation to study the structure of exotic atomic nuclei.

Students will work with Stephenson on the assembly, testing, integration, and final testing of a large-area multi-institutional scintillator array at the National Superconducting Cyclotron Laboratory at Michigan State University. One student each will be involved in the summers of 2010 and 2011.

The project, "MRI-Consortium: Development of a Neutron Detector Array by Undergraduate Research Students for Studies of Exotic Nuclei," is a collaboration with other primarily undergraduate institutions: Hope, Concordia, Westmont, Rhodes, and Wabash colleges, the University of Indiana, and Ohio Wesleyan and Central Michigan universities.

This semester, Stephenson and fellow physics Prof. Brett Crawford are leading a seminar for Gettysburg College students in England. "The London Laboratory: Locating Ourselves in Space, Time, and Culture" develops skills like navigation and naked-eye astronomy and explores the history of the London Underground, timekeeping, and other topics. It examines questions such as the meaning of "place" in our definitions of ourselves.

Stephenson's research in nuclei and the weak force takes her to the Triangle Universities Nuclear Lab at Duke University amd the Los Alamos National Laboratory in New Mexico. She teaches courses and labs in introductory and modern physics and classical mechanics and a first year seminar on gender in science and technology. She also coordinates Gettysburg College's Dual-Degree Engineering Program.

She earned a bachelor's degree in physics at Millsaps College and doctorate in nuclear physics at North Carolina State University.

Founded in 1832, Gettysburg College is a highly selective four-year residential college of liberal arts and sciences. With some 2,500 students, it is located on a 200-acre campus adjacent to the Gettysburg National Military Park in Pennsylvania.

Contact: Jim Hale, online content editor

Posted Nov. 11, 2009

 

Founded in 1832, Gettysburg College is a highly selective four-year residential college of liberal arts and sciences with a strong academic tradition. Alumni include Rhodes Scholars, a Nobel laureate, and other distinguished scholars. The college enrolls 2,600 undergraduate students and is located on a 200-acre campus adjacent to the Gettysburg National Military Park in Pennsylvania.

Posted: Wed, 11 Nov 2009


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