CARNEGIE MELLON UNIVERSITY
Carnegie Mellon is a modest size, private university situated in a pleasant residential and cultural area of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The city is known for its parks, museums, cultural halls, and sports arenas, all of which are within easy reach. The University has a long tradition of graduate training in nuclear science, and offers vigorous research programs in both Chemistry and Physics. The nuclear chemistry group is currently active in several research areas, represented by the programs of Professors Kaplan and Karol. These programs each have a strong experimental base and components that interrelate theoretical developments with experiment.
Professor Karol's research interests are mainly in high energy nuclear reactions, especially deep spallation processes in which very highly excited nuclei emit large numbers of particles leading to reaction products far removed from the original target. His experimental program as well as his theoretical studies are directed towards an understanding of the spallation reaction mechanisms, and the predictions of high energy reaction cross sections and product yields over a broad range of possible targets and incident projectiles. He also has current interests in several applied areas of nuclear chemistry, such as high-performance liquid chromatography, nuclear burnup of radioactive wastes, and environmental problems.
The major thrust of Professor Kaplan's research is in the area of nuclear reactions induced by heavy ion beams, and involves studies of reaction mechanisms, decay patterns of highly excited nuclei, and the evolution of nuclear shapes with excitation energy and angular momentum. Our experiments are carried out at several accelerator laboratories, using electronic detectors to identify and measure the characteristics of nuclear reaction products. The information (data) is recorded on magnetic tape, which we later replay and analyze in our laboratories at Carnegie Mellon using our own state-of-the-art computer facilities. In addition to the experimental studies, we are developing and using theoretical models involving reaction simulations and nuclear evaporation computer codes, which apply the theoretical frameworks directly to experimental conditions. We are particularly fortunate in having the Pittsburgh Supercomputing Center located in the same building as our research laboratories, which allows for ready access to the Cray Supercomputer in projects requiring the highest computational speeds. The overall objectives of our program are to understand the behavior of nuclear matter under extreme conditions of temperature, pressure, and rotational forces, and to discover the pathways which such unstable nuclei follow on the route to stability.
Both Professors Karol and Kaplan are involved in the STAR Collaboration, a consortium of many institutions and scientists working together to plan for future experiments at RHIC, the Relativistic Heavy Ion Collider now under construction at Brookhaven National Laboratory. This new accelerator facility will produce ultra-high-energy collisions between counter-rotating beams of gold ions, and create conditions reminiscent of the very early times following the origin of the universe. The STAR Collaboration has taken responsibility for building a major detector system designed to study the unique phenomena expected to occur under such extreme conditions.
Research and teaching assistantships are available, as well as several special fellowships for truly outstanding students.
For additional information, please contact:
Professor Morton Kaplan
Department of Chemistry
Carnegie Mellon University
4400 Fifth Avenue
Pittsburgh, PA 15213