Ike Uchenna Chukwu and Burkley Patterson were recently both named recipients of the 2014 IPST Monroe Martin Prize for Undergraduate Research in Physics.
Burkley's... read more
This event took place at the Busboys and Poets restaurant in downtown Washington, DC, and was part of a series of presentations meant to bring science to the public. Trey's topic was supercold... read more
JQI fellow Paul Julienne has recently retired from NIST but continues to perform high-level theoretical research in the subject he helped to create---ultracold matter. In honor of his birthday, a... read more
James R. Williams
James R. Williams is the newest JQI fellow, having arrived in March 2014. He is an assistant professor of physics at the University of Maryland, and his chief area of research is experimental condensed matter physics. Specifically, he specializes in understanding why certain one and two-dimensional materials (e.g. topological insulators, graphene) depart from normal conductivity provided by free electrons.
Jimmy, as he likes to be called, almost didn’t go to college. All he wanted to do was work on cars. His mother forced him to apply to one college, so he choose Santa Clara University where he previously attended a basketball camp. He majored in engineering, but his favorite courses involved physics, so he changed direction again. This is how he arrived at his chosen area of research.
Eventually he got a PhD from Harvard University in 2009 on the subject of grapheme, while studying under Charles M. Marcus. He was then a postdoctoral fellow at Stanford before coming to Maryland.
Phil Richerme is a postdoc in Chris Monroe's Trapped Ion Quantum Information Group. He studies quantum magnetism using a well-controlled and well-isolated system of atomic ion spins, realizing Feynman's original proposal for a quantum simulator. These experiments probe the ground state and dynamical evolution of interacting spin systems, which are difficult (or impossible) for classical computers to calculate for even a few dozen spins. Phil received his Ph.D. from Harvard in 2012, working with Gerald Gabrielse and the ATRAP collaboration at CERN to trap antihydrogen atoms for sensitive tests of CPT symmetry.
Wes Campbell is a JQI alumni and now a faculty member at UCLA where his group studies cold molecules and trapped ions. His cold molecule research is an outgrowth of the NSF Physics Frontier Center’s seed funding program, here at JQI. While at JQI, Wes did research in Chris Monroe’s trapped ion quantum information group. Wes was instrumental in constructing an experiment that focuses on ultrafast gates with ions. Later in his postdoc, he worked on quantum simulations of magnetism with ion chains. More about his current group at http://campbellgroup.physics.ucla.edu/
Stephen Powell, a former JQI postdoctoral fellow at CMTC, now works at the Nordic Institute of Theoretical Physics or Nordita in Stockholm, Sweden. His research in the group of Sankar Das Sarma centered around strongly correlated systems with a specific focus on frustrated magnetism and ultracold gases. At Nordita, he will continue this line of research, which is at the meeting point of condensed matter and atomic physics. In talking of his postdoctoral experience he says, “Something I've particularly enjoyed about being at JQI is having close contact with various experimental groups here.”
Hafezi is JQI fellow and works at the interface of condensed matter theory and quantum optics. The focus of his research is on theoretical and experimental investigations of artificial gauge fields and topological order in photonics systems. Such systems can be exploited as robust optical devices insensitive to disorder, which is the subject of his NSF Physics Frontier Center’s seed funding program. Moreover, in the presence of strong optical nonlinearity, such systems are expected to exhibit fractional quantum Hall physics, providing a platform for potentially observing anoynic statistics. He received his Ph.D. from Harvard in 2009 where he worked with Mikhail Lukin and Eugene Demler. There, he studied strongly correlated physics in AMO systems. In particular, he worked on the topological characterization of ultracold atoms in 2D and also non-equilibrium dynamics of strongly interacting photons in 1D.
Former NRC postdoctoral fellow Steven Olmschenk is currently faculty at Denison University located in Granville, Ohio. Steve was a graduate student in Chris Monroe’s Trapped Ion Quantum Information group and then a postdoc in the NIST Laser Cooling and Trapping Group. While at NIST he worked on Trey Porto’s double-well optical lattice experiment. At Dension he has a group researching physics at the interface of quantum optics and trapped atomic ions http://personal.denison.edu/~olmschenks/.
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