Academic Resources

Summer Scholars Program

Physics Department

Updated for 2015

Department Website


Dr. Paul Angiolillo
Exploring Exotic Materials with Electron Paramagnetic Resonance Spectroscopy
Numerous genera of the Mollusca and Cephalopoda biomineralize calcium carbonate into two polymorphs: aragonite and calcite.  This lab has recently undertaken projects to explore mineralized calcium carbonate in both extant and extinct species.  In particular, the radiation-induced defects in calcite and aragonite in extinct species is not only interesting from a physics viewpoint but may be used to glean information about the organisms age and ecology.  In extant species, these biomaterials exemplify physical characteristics such as strength and toughness that warrants further.

Dr. Yu Gu

Dr. Yu Gu
Femtosecond laser materials processing (micromachining) is a novel, mask-less micro fabrication technique that is inherently three-dimensional.  When a femtosecond laser beam is tightly focused into a material, nonlinear processes occur as a result of multi-photon absorption.  We will explore the potential for  micromachining in a variety of materials including glass, SU-8 photoresist, and a polymer called PDMS (Polydimethylsiloxane).  Special attention will be paid to material ablation and how it is influenced by writing parameters such as power, focusing and writing speed.

Piotr Habdas

Dr. Peter Habdas


Dr. Douglas Kurtze
My currently active research projects are:  (1) Developing a simplified theoretical model of the interaction of sea ice and ocean circulation, and applying it to the Snowball Earth episodes in the Neoproterozoic Era (c. 600 million years ago) and to global warming today; (2) extending that model to include the mechanisms by which the ocean regulates atmospheric CO2; (3) assessing theoretical models meant to explain the causes of oscillations in large-scale ocean circulation; and (4) investigating the behavior of models of traffic flow and traffic jams.  The last grows out of my general research interest in how patterns form spontaneously in nature.