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Richie Bonventre ’08 Wins 2018 URA Tollestrup Award

Posted by on Sep 20, 2018 in News | Comments Off on Richie Bonventre ’08 Wins 2018 URA Tollestrup Award

Congratulations to alum Richie Bonventre ’08 (now at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory) for winning the 2018 Universities Research Association Tollestrup Award. The award recognizes outstanding postdoctoral research at Fermilab or in collaboration with Fermilab scientists.

According to the announcement here “Researchers on the Mu2e experiment look for evidence that muons can change directly into electrons. The telltale signature of this decay is an electron with an energy of 105 million electronvolts (MeV). The rate of this conversion is so rare that in order to catch just one instance of this phenomenon, the detector must track decay products from 1 billion billion muons, which are as many muons as there are grains of sand on Earth’s beaches.

“Bonventre helped develop the electronics for the prototype Mu2e detector as well as the prototype itself. The electronics take measurements of the muon conversion via a part of the detector called the straw tracker. The electrons produced from the muon decay will zip down the approximately 20,000 straws, which have sense wires running through the middle that are a quarter the width of a human hair. He programmed computer chips to record the arrival time and position of the particles passing through the straws. The timing and position information are later used to precisely determine the momentum of the passing particle, which can vary between the momentum of a normal electron and neutrinos that appear from standard muon decay and that of the special 105-MeV electron.”

“I think that Richard is precisely the sort of physicist that Alvin Tollestrup had in mind when he created this award,” said Tollestrup Award Committee Chair Michael J. Mulhearn of the University of California, Davis. “He is someone that intuitively knows what is needed to make an experiment work, and he keeps at it until he has the best result possible.”

 

Physics and Astronomy Student and Faculty Present at CAARI 2018 Conference

Posted by on Aug 31, 2018 in Faculty, News, Research, Students | Comments Off on Physics and Astronomy Student and Faculty Present at CAARI 2018 Conference

Three faculty and a student in the Department of Physics and Astronomy presented their research
at the 25th International Conference on the Application of Accelerators in Research and Industry
(CAARI 2018) in Grapevine, Texas, in August. Prof. Heather Watson gave a talk titled “Diffusion
in sulfide and sulfate minerals with planetary applications.” A presentation titled “PIXE Analysis
of Synthetic Turf” was given by Prof. Michael Vineyard. Prof. Scott LaBrake and Sajju Chalise
(’19) gave an oral presentation titled “Distribution of Heavy Metals Along New York’s East River.”
Sajju Chalise also presented a poster at the conference titled “Proton Induced X-ray Emission
(PIXE) Analysis to Measure Trace Metals in Soil along the East River in Queens, NY.” Much of
this research was performed in the Union College Ion-Beam Analysis Laboratory.

From left to right: Professor Watson, Professor LaBrake, Sajju Chalise ’19, and Professor Vineyard at the 2018 CAARI conference

Union Astronomy Faculty and Students Present at ASNY50 Astronomy Meeting in New York City

Posted by on Jul 26, 2018 in News | Comments Off on Union Astronomy Faculty and Students Present at ASNY50 Astronomy Meeting in New York City

Professors Koopmann and Wilkin and students Max Libre ’19, Gianna Morton ’21, Aiyana Poulin ’19, and Jason Sindoni ’21 attended the Astronomical Society of New York 50th Anniversary Celebration, “The State of Astronomy and Astrophysics” July 11-13, 2018, at the American Museum of Natural History in New York City. They gave the following presentations:

Prof. Koopmann (Contributed Talk): The Undergraduate ALFALFA Team: A Model for Involving Undergraduates in Astronomy Collaborations

Prof. Wilkin (Contributed Talk): Spiral Nebulae from Orbiting Winds

Gianna Morton (Lightening Talk): Measuring the Mass of the Pisces Perseus Supercluster with APPSS

Aiyana Poulin (poster): UAT Star Formation in Groups of Galaxies

Jason Sindoni (Lightening Talk): Observations of Koronis Family Asteroids

Soon-to-be (Fall 2018) Visiting Assistant Professor Jennifer Carter presented a lightening talk on the topic “Modeling Reflection of Extremely Close-In Exoplanets.”

The Astronomical Society of New York and its parent organization the New York Astronomical Corporation was founded in 1968 by astronomers at New York State universities, colleges and observatories with the aim of building a large telescope for collaborative use by astronomers in the state. There are 27 members, including 8 PhD-granting and 19 primarily undergraduate institutions. ASNY holds annual meetings, supports student travel to observatories, and awards annual undergraduate and graduate student research prizes. A. G. Davis Philip, former Visiting Research Professor at Union College, was a founder and served as Secretary and Treasurer for more than 30 years. Prof. Koopmann is on the Board of Directors and served as Secretary for 16 years.

Jeopardy! asks question about Chad Orzel’s book

Posted by on Jun 1, 2018 in Faculty, News | Comments Off on Jeopardy! asks question about Chad Orzel’s book

A question on the May 23 episode of Jeopardy! featured the work of Chad Orzel, the R. Gordon Gould Association Professor of Physics. See this video.

Ion-Beam Analysis Group Publishes Paper

Posted by on Mar 16, 2018 in News | Comments Off on Ion-Beam Analysis Group Publishes Paper

The Ion-Beam Analysis Group recently published a paper, “PIXE Analysis of Synthetic Turf,” in Environment and Ecology Research. The authors are Michael Vineyard, the Frank and Marie Louise Bailey Professor of Physics;
Scott LaBrake, senior lecturer of physics; Sajju Chalise ’19; Morgan Clark ’17; Skye Conlan ’18; and Zachary Porat ’20. See also: ARTICLE_INFO and Download Paper.

Prof. Vineyard Presents at 7th International Symposium on Energy

Posted by on Jan 17, 2018 in News | Comments Off on Prof. Vineyard Presents at 7th International Symposium on Energy

Prof. Michael Vineyard presented a paper titled “PIXE Analysis of Synthetic Turf” at the 7th International Symposium on Energy in Manchester, England, on Aug. 13-17, 2017. The project was performed in collaboration with Scott LaBrake, Sajju Chalise (’19), Morgan Clark (’17), Skye Conlan (’18), and Zack Porat (’20). The focus of the study is to measure the concentrations of elements heavier than calcium in synthetic turf blade and infill samples to search for the presence of heavy metals and other toxic substances.

Ion Beam Group Publishes Paper

Posted by on Nov 16, 2017 in News | Comments Off on Ion Beam Group Publishes Paper

The Ion-Beam Analysis Group recently published a paper titled “Undergraduate Research and Training in Ion-Beam Analysis of Environmental Materials” in Physics Procedia. The authors are Michael Vineyard (Frank and Marie Louise Bailey Professor of Physics), Sajju Chalise (’19), Morgan Clark (’17), Scott LaBrake (Senior Lecturer of Physics), Andrew McCalmont (’16), Brendan McGuire (’18), Iseinie Mendez (’17), Heather Watson (Assistant Professor of Physics), and Joshua Yoskowitz (’16). The article can be accessed at:  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.phpro.2017.09.027
Two students traveled with Scott LaBrake (Senior Lecturer of Physics) and Michael Vineyard (Frank and Marie Louise Bailey Professor of Physics) to present posters at the Fall 2017 Meeting of the Division of Nuclear Physics of the American Physical Society in Pittsburgh, PA, on October 25-28, 2017. Sajju Chalise (’19) presented a poster titled “Proton Induced X-Ray Emission (PIXE) Analysis to Measure Trace Metals in Soil Along the East River in Queens, New York.” Skye Conlan  (’18) presented a poster titled “PIXE Analysis of Artificial Turf.” Zachary Porat (’20) was a coauthor on both posters.

Prof. Wilkin and Harry Hausner ’16 Publish Astronomy paper

Posted by on Aug 22, 2017 in Faculty, News, Research, Students | Comments Off on Prof. Wilkin and Harry Hausner ’16 Publish Astronomy paper

Prof. Wilkin and Harry Hausner ’16 published Exact Analytic Solution for a Ballistic Orbiting Wind in the Astrophysical Journal. The abstract and link to the paper may be found here.

Profs. Hallenbeck & Koopmann Publish Astronomy Paper

Posted by on Aug 22, 2017 in Faculty, News, Research, Students | Comments Off on Profs. Hallenbeck & Koopmann Publish Astronomy Paper

Professors Hallenbeck and Koopmann and collaborators published HI in Virgo’s “Red and Dead” Dwarf Ellipticals – A Tidal Tail and Central Star Formation in the Astronomical Journal. The abstract and link to the paper can be found here.

Maddie Miller ’19 Named Brooke Owens Fellow

Posted by on Apr 7, 2017 in News, Students | Comments Off on Maddie Miller ’19 Named Brooke Owens Fellow

Congratulations to Mechanical Engineering major and Astrophysics minor Madeleine Miller ’19, who has won a prestigious Brooke Owens Fellowship! Maddie will spend the summer in San Francisco working on satellites with the Planet company.  Read more about Maddie in the Union Chronicle.

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