Congrats to SDSU medical physics resident Mitch Sommerville who won this years AAPM Southern California Chapter Norm Baily Award for the amount of $500.

]]>Congratulations to masters student Priscilla Kelly (left) and Ph.D. student Micah Schuster (right) who both won at this years Applied Computational Science and Engineering Student Support (ACSESS) poster symposium. Micah Schuster works with Prof. Calvin Johnson in the areas of Nuclear Physics. Priscilla Kelly is working Prof. Lyuba Kuznetsova in the fields of Computational Optics and Photonics. Good job to both of you!

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Ph.D Computational Science students William Spinella (left) and Omair Zubairi (right) along with undergrad physics student Alexis Romero were all awarded the APS Division of Astrophysics (DAP) travel grant award for this year’s APS April meeting conference. The conference is being held in Baltimore, MD from April 11-14th. All three students work with Professor Fridolin Weber in the physics department in the areas of General Relativity and Numerical Astrophysics.

William Spinella works on Equation of State models of Neutron Stars. Omair Zubairi is investigating deformation structure of non-rotating neutron stars. Alexis Romero is currently studying the gravitational redshift of deformed neutron stars.

The SDSU physics department recognizes these students and congratulates them on the award. Good job to all!

]]>This year, the Computational Science Research Center (CSRC) gave out 8 S-STEM Scholarships to exceptional masters and Ph.D. students. Out the 8 students, the physics department is proud to announce that 4 of them are working with faculty in the physics department. The physics department congratulates these outstanding graduate students on the award.

This scholarship is funded through the National Science Foundation (NSF). This National Science Foundation (NSF)-funded scholarship program, referred to by the acronym Graduate S-STEM (for scholarships in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics), will provide scholarships of $10,000/yr for two years, to supplement their teaching or research assistantships.

The Scholarships for Graduate Student Participation in Computational Science and Engineering Research program is supported by a grant from the National Science Foundation and managed by SDSU’s Computational Science Research Center.

All four winners conduct (or will be conducting) research through the CSRC wih their specialization in physics. William Spinella and Omair Zubairi work on Numerical Astrophysics and General Relativity with Professor Fridolin Weber. Priscilla Kelly a new incoming Master’s Student will be conducting her research with SDSU’s Physics departments newest faculty Dr. Kuznetsova in the field of Computational Optics and Photonics. Uyen Hoang also a new incoming Ph.D. student will be working with Professor Usha Sinha (Physics Dept. Chair) in the field of Medical Physics and Image Informatics.

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The SDSU physics department welcomes back Micah Schuster from his 3rd internship at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL). Micah is a Ph.D. student in computational science working with Calvin Johnson in the field of nuclear physics. He was brought to the lab through the Institute for Scientific Computing Research to work with Sofia Quaglioni in the computational nuclear physics group.

Like the previous 2 years, Micah won first place at the annual the LLNL student poster symposium on his poster titled: “Operator evolution for ab initio nuclear theory” See below for his abstract of his poster.

**Abstract:**

The past two decades have seen a revolution in ab initio calculations of nuclear properties. One key element has been the development of a rigorous effective interaction theory, applying unitary transformations to soften the nuclear Hamiltonian and hence accelerate the convergence as a function of the model space size. For consistency, however, one ought to apply the same transformation to other operators when calculating properties other than spectra. In this work we use the similarity renormalization group (SRG) to soften the Hamiltonian and, for the first time, compute the matter radius of 3H, 4He, and 6Li.

]]>Congrats to Ph.D. student Omair Zubairi who won 2nd place (Qualcomm Award) at the SDSU Computational Science Research Center’s 11th Annual ACSESS poster session for his poster entitled “Non-Spherical Stellar Models of Compact Stars” Omair Zubairi works with Professor Fridolin Weber in the areas of General Relativity and numerical Astrophysics. Read his abstract below:

Conventionally, the structure of compact stellar objects such as neutron or quark stars are modeled with the assumption that they are perfect spheres. However, due to high magnetic fields, certain classes of compact stars (such as magnetars and neutron stars containing cores of color-superconducting quark matter) are expected to be deformed (non-spherical) making them oblonged spheroids. In this work, we seek to investigate the stellar structure of these such deformed compact objects in the framework of generalrelativity. Using a metric that describes a non-spherical mass distribution, we derive the stellar structures equations of these non-spherical compact objects, Parameterize these structure equations in polar and radial directions, calculate stellar properties such as mass and radii of these objects, and investigate any changes from the standard spherical models.

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The SDSU physics department welcomes back Micah Schuster from his second internship at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL). Micah is a Ph.D. student in computational science working with Calvin Johnson in the field of nuclear physics. He was brought to the lab through the Institute for Scientific Computing Research to work with Sofia Quaglioni in the computational nuclear physics group. This summer his research involved structure and observable calculations of hydrogen-3 and helium-4 within the *ab initio* no-core shell model.

“Working at LLNL for the past two summers has been an amazing experience. The Lab offers a great opportunity to interact with top researchers in my field,” Schuster said. His project this summer, “Operator evolution within the *ab initio* no-core shell model,” was selected as one of the winning posters at the lab-wide student poster symposium. This is the second year in a row that he as been selected to receive an award. In 2012, his project, titled “*Ab initio* many-body calculations of the ^{4}He photo-absorption cross-section” was also selected as a winning poster.

Next spring Micah will be applying for the Lawrence Scholar Program to continue his research at the lab. This program grants top Ph.D. students appointments of up to four years to conduct research of interest to the lab while completing their dissertation.

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