Category Archives: Research

Cloud in a Box

Cloud Chamber20140324_0003When it comes to climate change, clouds are the wild card. Atmospheric physicists at Michigan Tech use a turbulence-generating cloud chamber to better understand the details and droplets.

There are few absolutes in life, but Will Cantrell says this is one: “Every cloud droplet in Earth’s atmosphere formed on a preexisting aerosol particle.”

And the way those droplets form — with scarce or plentiful aerosol particles — could have serious implications for weather and climate change.

It’s been known for decades that cleaner clouds tend to have bigger cloud droplets. But through research conducted in Michigan Tech’s cloud chamber, which was published by Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Cantrell, graduate student Kamal Kant Chandrakar, Raymond Shaw and colleagues found that cleaner clouds also have a much wider variability in droplet size. So wide, in fact, that some are large enough to be considered drizzle drops.

Dirtier clouds, Shaw explains, not only have smaller droplets, but also much more uniformity in droplet size, with no observable drizzle drops.

“If clouds have more aerosols in them, the drops would be smaller and more similar in size,” Shaw says. “It would be harder for the cloud to rain, and the cloud would then last longer. If a cloud rains, or has less water in it, it won’t be there to reflect sunlight.”

By Stefanie Sidortsova, read the full story.

 


Jaszcak discovery is spreading across the world

image144299-persDozens of news outlets and science blogs have covered research by John Jaszcak (Physics) and his team that led to the discovery of the new mineral merelaniite.

Several of the outlets include United Press International, Australian Mining, Phys.org, the German blog Scinexx, several geology blogs like Geology In and Science Explorer. Local coverage in Tanzania has also been extensive including stories by the BBC and The Guardian in Swahili.



New Funding

Raymond Shaw

Raymond Shaw (Physics/EPSSI) is the principal investigator on a research and development project that has received a $150,931 grant from the U.S. Department of Defense, Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL).

 

 


Will Cantrellimage64675-pers

Will Cantrell (Physics) and Claudio Mazzoleni (Physics) are Co-PIs on the project, “An Investigation of the Suitability of a Laboratory Cloud Chamber for Optical Radiative Transfer Measurements.”

 

This is the first year of a two-year project potentially totaling $316,374.


Jaszczak presented at Denver Mineral and Gem Show

image144299-persJohn Jaszczak (Physics and adjunct curator of the A. E. Seaman Mineral Museum) presented an invited lecture at the Denver Mineral and Gem Show (Sept. 16-18).

Jaszczak presented “Mineralogical Miracles From Merelani, Tanzania,” and brought an exhibit of faceted fluorite gemstones from the museum’s collection that were donated to the museum by the late Harold Dibble.

Read more at Tech Today.


New Funding in Physics

Claudio Mazzoleni (Physics/EPSSI) is the principal investigator on a research and development project that has received $400,321 from the National Science Foundation.

Jacek Borysow (Physics), Raymond Shaw (Physics), Will Cantrell (Physics) and David Ciochetto (Physics) are co-PIs of the project, “MRI: Development of a Water Vapor and Temperature Mapping System to Study Cloud-Turbulence Interactions in the MTU PI-Chamber.”
This is the first year of a three-year project.

Jae Yong Suh article in Applied Materials and Interfaces Journal

no spine minimum. full size. Editor: Jon JEM: Esther RTP: Bryan Nolte TOC imageImages from “Interfacial Mode Interactions of Surface Plasmon Polaritons on Gold Nanodome Films” co-authored by Jae Yong Suh (Physics) appeared on the August cover of Applied Materials and Interfaces.

The article describes a method to create centimeter-scale lattices of gold nanodomes in order to study their optical properties.

Read more at Tech Today


NSF Grant for Petra Huentemeyer

image64665-persPetra Huentemeyer (Physics/EPPSI) received a $170,000 research and development grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF).

Huentemeyer is the principal investigator for “Investigating Large Scale Structures and Galactic Plane Morphologies at TeV Energies with the HAWC Observatory.”

This is the first year of a three-year project potentially totalling $510,000.

From Tech Today


Master Student Andrea Baccarini describes his research work in the Azores

AndreaAndrea Baccarini is an Italian master student who graduated in Physics at the University of Trento in 2016. Andrea performed field research at the Pico Mountain Observatory in the Azores in collaboration with MTU faculty members. Recently, he described his field experience in the MTU “Unscripted: Science and Research” blog as a guest writer with an entry titled “On Top of the World“.

 


Probing Quantum Phenomena in Tiny Transistors

Nearly a thousand times thinner than a human hair, nanowires can only be understood with quantum mechanics. Using quantum models, physicists from Michigan Tech have figured out what drives the efficiency of a silicon-germanium (Si-Ge) core-shell nanowire transistor.

The study, published last week in Nano Letters, focuses on the quantum tunneling in a core-shell nanowire structure. Ranjit Pati (Physics) led the work along with his graduate students Kamal Dhungana and Meghnath Jaishi.

From Michigan Tech News, by Allison Mills