Bayer School Welcomes Visiting Nuclear Physicist to Lead Minicourse, Lecture on Quarks

The Bayer School of Natural and Environmental Science (BSNES) is hosting Dr. Douglas Higinbotham, a staff scientist at Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility (Jefferson Lab) in Newport News, VA, as the school’s first visiting scholar for the 2016-17 academic year.

Dr. Douglas Higinbotham

Higinbotham will be at Duquesne from Nov. 14 through Dec. 9. During his visit, he will be leading a number of events to teach students more about quarks, the research program at Jefferson Lab, as well as opportunities to get involved through internships.

The schedule of events is as follows:

  • Smashing the Atom: A Journey into the Heart of Matter – This four-lecture undergraduate-level minicourse will discuss the history of particle accelerators, modern day accelerators with a focus on Jefferson Lab and contemporary nuclear physics research. All lectures will be held in Room 609, Fisher Hall.
    Lecture 1 – Thursday, Nov. 17, from 3:05 to 4:20 p.m.
    Lecture 2 – Tuesday, Nov. 29, from 12:15 to 1:30 p.m.
    Lecture 3 – Thursday, Dec. 1, from 3:05 to 4:20 p.m.
    Lecture 4 – Tuesday, Dec. 6 from 12:15 to 1:30 p.m.
    A certificate of completion will be given to students who attend all four lectures.
  • Pizza lunch with students – On Friday, Nov. 18, from 1:00 to 2:30 p.m. in Room 214, Fisher Hall, Higinbotham will be hosting a lunch for students to meet and discuss his work at Jefferson Lab and the fields of nuclear and accelerator physics.
  • Building Blocks of MatterHiginbotham’s public lecture will be held on Monday, Dec. 5, at 7 p.m. in the Pappert Lecture Hall, with a reception to follow. The campus community and general public are invited to attend.

“Hosting a distinguished scientist like Dr. Higinbotham will not only expose our students to the cutting edge research that goes on at a facility like Jefferson Lab, but it will allow the students to get to know him on a more personal level,” said Dr. Philip Reeder, dean of the Bayer School. “They can gain insights into what makes someone at the top of their field tick as they, as students, contemplate the next stage of their lives beyond Duquesne.”

Higinbotham earned his Ph.D. in nuclear physics from the University of Virginia in 2000 and joined the Jefferson Lab as a staff scientist in 2001. In addition to his extensive research, he also mentors doctoral candidates, college students and area high school students. He has twice been awarded the United States Department of Energy’s Outstanding Mentor Award.

During his visit, Higinbotham will be in Room 309, Fisher Hall.