A Phase Transition in the Department
The department is delighted to welcome our three newest members, Ellen Keister, Michael Lerner, and Kyle Zilic.
Ellen is an experimentalist whose research focuses on laser, atomic and optical science. Specifically, she uses ultrafast lasers spanning from the mid-infrared to the extreme ultraviolet to probe structure and dynamics of molecules and nanostructures. She comes to us from JILA at the University of Colorado and, before that, the University of Illinois. She'll push the department's focus on laser physics in new and exciting directions. In her spare time, she's passionate about fiber arts.
Michael is a computational biophysicist whose research interests include studying how proteins and lipids diffuse in membranes, as well as the structure and dynamics of nucleic acids and proteins. He comes to us via the Laboratory of Computational Biology at the National Institutes of Health and, before that, the University of Michigan. He brings an exciting new focus on biophysics and computational science to the department and, in his spare time, plays as much ultimate frisbee as he can get away with.
Kyle is an experimentalist in the field of cosmology, designing and building a millimeter-wave telescope to view light left over from the Big Bang. He focuses on mm-wave and IR polarimetry, as well as cryogenics to measure the physics of the early Universe. He comes to us from the Observational Cosmology Group at the University of Minnesota: Twin Cities. He adds a Universal perspective and an interesting focus on polarization astrophysics. In his spare time, he fancies himself an amateur chef and a veteran of various nerdy games.
It is with bittersweet sentmient that say goodbye to Teresa Herd. After four years in Indiana, she is heading East to take a position at Mount Holyoke, and we wish her all the best.
As with all phase transitions in small systems, this one will not be abrupt; although they're retiring, we're looking forward to courses and involvement from John and Ray over the next several years!