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Concordia Physics Newsletter

Volume 1, Issue 1 (Summer 2002)

NSF Grant Awarded For Nuclear Physics Research

The development of powerful new radioactive beam facilities is enabling nuclear physicists to investigate exotic neutron-rich nuclei normally found only on the surface of neutron stars or in the centers of exploding stars. Dr. Bryan Luther was awarded a $100,000 grant by the National Science foundation to help build a new highly efficient neutron detector to take advantage of these new capabilities.

The Modular Neutron Array (MoNA) is being constructed by a collaboration of 10 colleges and universities at the National Superconducting Cyclotron Laboratory (NSCL). Dr. Luther and three Concordia students (Melanie Evanger, Mustafa Rajabali and Ramsey Turner) are spending the summer at the NSCL working on the MoNA detector.

John Gergoire Receives Goldwater Scholarship

Physics and Mathematics major John Gregoire has been awarded the Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship. Scholarships are given to undergraduate sophomores and juniors in the fields of mathematics, the natural sciences, and engineering from the 50 states and Puerto Rico. This year 309 scholar-ships were awarded from a field of 1,155 students who were nominated by faculty members. John plans to get his Ph.D. in mathematics and to conduct research as a theoretical mathematician or a nuclear physicist.

The Goldwater Foundation is a federally endowed agency, which was established in 1986 The Scholarship Program honoring Senator Barry M. Goldwater was designed to foster and encourage outstanding students to pursue careers in the fields of mathematics, the natural sciences, and engineering. The Goldwater Scholarship is the premier undergraduate award of its type in these fields.

Physics Professor Named Flaat Distinguished Teacher

Dr. Bryan Luther was awarded the Ole and Lucy Flaat Distinguished Teaching Award at the Fall 2001 opening banquet. The Flaat Teaching Award is given anually to a member of the Concordia faculty based on recommendations of students, staff and faculty. Dr. Luther joined the Concordia College Faculty in 1994 and is an Associate Professor in the Physics Department.

Physics Alumni News

  • Concordia grads Nathan Frank (Physics, '00) and Holly Koskovich (Education, '00) were married on July 20, 2002 at the St. Paul Lutheran Church in Le Center, MN. The Franks currently live in East Lansing, MI where Nathan is pursuing a Ph.D. in nuclear physics at Michigan State University.

  • Matt Fulkerson ('98) received his Ph.D. in Physics from The Ohio State University in May, 2002. His thesis was titled "Gas Sensor Array Modeling and Cuprate Superconductivity from Correlated Spin Disorder"

  • Shane Lynch ('98) is the now an Assistant Professor of Music/Professor of Choral Music at the University of Wisconsin--Barron County in Rice Lake, WI.

SPS Holds First Annual Egg Drop Contest

The Concordia Chapter of the Society of Physics Students held it's first egg drop contest at the end of the 2002 school year. Students competed to design a device that would not only protect their egg but get it to the ground as quickly as possible. A wide variety of contraptions were dropped off the back of Jake Christiansen Memorial Stadium. First place went to senior physics major Todd Fergussen whose winning design included nylons, an empty peanut container and a cinder block.

Patrick Sundberg ('02) initiated the egg drop contest and hopes to see it become an annual SPS event. Patrick sees the contest not only as a fun outing for Concordia students but as a way to reach out to the wider community. “It’s a really good thing just to get people together with some sort of physics project that promotes physics in the community” he said.

Copyright © 2002 Concordia College, Physics Department. All Rights Reserved.