Physics grants

SURE grant
Feb. 20, 2017 -- Wesleyan's School of Science was awarded a SURE Grant by the WV Higher Education Policy Commission. The grant will pay ten students a stipend of $3500 for eight weeks of research during the summer. The grant also allows for summer travel funds so students can present their research findings at scientific conferences. The grant gives science students an opportunity to stay on campus to focus on research in the summer in a one-on-one setting with a faculty member. 

Physics students earn 2016 NASA Fellowships
Oct. 3, 2016 -- The NASA-WV Space Grant Consortium announced fellowships for eleven freshmen physics students. The announcement was made by Dr. Joseph Wiest, Wesleyan's representative on the NASA board.

Photo from left: Austin Skinner, Dr. Wiest, Nicholas Stainbach, Dr. DeLaney, Andrew Rapking, Bobbi Mitchell, Andrew Bradley-Popovich, Carl Moman, Dr. Reynolds, Josh Tenney, Andrew Gresser, Brian Hammonds, Wyatt Wright, Mr. Grose, Ben Oldaker, Dr. Milbury, Dr. Popson

Grants provide stipends for 2016 physics summer internships at Wesleyan
May 9, 2016—Seven students started working today on summer research projects at Wesleyan. Dr. DeLaney's students are Kimmie Culver, Mark Leadingham, Angela Meyer, Olivia Rycroft, and Samantha Stinson. They are working on three projects: (1) developing a payload for a NASA sounding rocket to be launched this summer, (2) astronomy research involving pulsars and gravitational waves, and (3) building two radio telescopes. Stipends and supplies are provided by the NASA-WV Space Grant Consortium, the WV Higher Education Policy Commission's radio telescope grant, and by the WV Higher Education Policy Commission's gravitational waves grant. 

Dustin Kimble and Kody Tucker are working on nanotechnology projects with Dr. Wiest. Dustin's project is to use Raman spectrometry to determine the molecular structure of biodegradable plastics. Cody's project involves impurities in semiconductors. The students are paid by a grant from the NASA-WV Space Grant Consortium. 
Dr. DeLaney wins EPSCOR Grant
January 11, 2016—The Division of Science and Research of the West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission awarded Dr. Tracey DeLaney $8500 to build two small radio telescopes. The award came from the Instrumentation and Innovation program of the WV Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (EPSCOR).
One of the telescopes will be a single-dish design using an 8-ft mesh dish. This telescope will operate at 1420 GHz, an ideal frequency to observe neutral hydrogen gas in the Milky Way galaxy. The other telescope will be an interferometer that combines the signals from two 2-ft dishes. The interferometer will operate at 12 GHz, an ideal frequency for observing the Sun.
"Each of these telescopes provides opportunities for Engineering and Physics students to learn about the mechanics of mounting the control system, the electronics involved, and the physics of the astronomical objects being observed," explained Dr. DeLaney, who will hire two students to assist her this summer. 
Students win 2015 NASA Fellowships

Sept. 22, 2015—The NASA-WV Space Grant Consortium has awarded NASA Fellowships to ten physics students. The announcement was made by Dr. Joseph Wiest, Professor of Physics. 
"Winners are selected based on their academic record and their commitment to a discipline of interest to NASA," added Dr. Wiest, who also serves as a member of the NASA Board. Awardees are paid a stipend to perform a research project during the academic year
Photo, seated: Lake Sankey, Dr. Wiest, Dr. Popson, Dr. DeLaney. Standing: Randy Corathers, Allison Haertter, Lennard Schleiff, Ryzhon Middleton, Cayla Collett, Duncan McClung, Brennan Nettleton, Dr. Xu

$20 million National Science Foundation Grant
Aug. 10, 2015—"We are able to announce a brand-new $20-million award for West Virginia from the National Science Foundation," said Jan Taylor, Director of Science and Research at the WV Higher Education Policy Commission. The five-year-long grant will support research in both gravitational-wave astrophysics and water resources. Much of this research is possible because of the Greenbank National Radio Astronomy facility and the Appalachian Freshwater Initiative. "The money will be used to boost academic scientific research and significantly upgrade infrastructure at WVU, Marshall, WV State University, Shepherd University, and Wesleyan." 
Dr. DeLaney and two Wesleyan students will receive $11,600 annually for the next five years to study gravitational wave astrophysics. Dr. Delaney explains, "Gravitational waves are ripples in space-time produced when a very massive object abruptly slows down, speeds up, or changes direction. Gravitational waves are a key prediction of Einstein's general relativity theory. Gravitational waves have been observed through measurements of the orbital decay of binary pulsars. A binary pulsar is the rapidly rotating core of a massive star that is left behind after the star exploded." 
Dr. DeLaney and her students will work with astronomers at WVU to observe pulsar systems using the Green Bank telescope. They will develop computer algorithms to search for gravitational waves within the Green Bank signals. In addition, they will perform follow-up observations using other telescopes, such as the Very Large Array and the Chandra X-ray Observatory.
Progress·report on our new physics lab
May 4, 2015—Wesleyan began renovations to create a new physics lab on Christopher Hall's first floor. The state-of-the-art facility will be ready when classes start in August. Funding is provided through our $10-Million Department of Education Title III grant.
NASA-WV Space Grant Consortium funds summer research April 18, 2015—The WVSGC is providing funding for summer research projects at Wesleyan for the following four students: Ryder Bolin, Aaron Weaver, Andrew Tiffin, and Amelia Riley. Ryder will work on a project using our new seismometer and Aaron's project uses our new StellarNet spectrometer. Andrew and Amelia's projects involve electron microscopes.
$10·million Department of Education grant 
September 15, 2014—Wesleyan has been awarded a $10-million Title III grant by the U.S. Department of Education. The grant, which will be distributed over five years, is the largest award Wesleyan have ever received. "As you might imagine, we are absolutely thrilled about this grant, said President Balch. "The award allows us to improve student success through adding staff, improving classrooms, and investing in faculty development."
Dominion grant 
December 19, 2014—The Physics Department has been awarded $50,000 from the Dominion Foundation to purchase new equipment. Our purchased include a seismometer and geophones, which give information on underground rock formations; a Raman spectrometer, a mass spectrometer, a nuclear spectrometer, and an X-ray spectrometer, all of which give detailed information about the chemical composition of materials; and a turbo vacuum pump to operate the mass spectrometer.
President Balch said, "We are thankful for Dominion's gift, which will go very far to enhance hands-on learning." In the photo are Bob Skinner, VP for Advancement; Robert Orndorff, Managing Director for WV and State, Local, and Government Affairs, Dominion; Dr. Popson, President Balch, Brian Sheppard, Vice President, Pipeline Operations, Dominion.
2014 NASA Fellowship winners  
October 4, 2014—Wesleyan's NASA Committee selected eleven students for this year's NASA Fellowships. Winners are selected based on their academic record and commitment to a discipline of interest to NASA.
Winners are paid a stipend to perform a research project during the academic year. In addition, they have the opportunity to apply for a summer internship at a NASA facility such as the NASA-Langley Space Flight Center.
In the photo, front: Dr. DeLaney, Alex Brannon, Kim Lubic, Angela Meyer. Back: Joshua Jacobs, Aryn House, Dr. Reynolds, Fredricah Gardner, Neil Scherich, Marshall Sharp, Ashton Hinzman, Jericho Norris, Mark Leadingham, Dr. Wiest, Dr. Popson

Dr. Popson wins $19,958 for magnetic resonance instrumentation  
NSF-EPSCOR has approved Dr. Popson's proposal to purchase a Teach-Spin Model PS-2 pulsed magnetic resonance spectrometer. Students will benefit because of the instrument's enhanced ability to measure molecular bonding energies. We will use the instrumentation for both education and research.
Dr. Wiest wins $20,000 for spectrometer   
NSF-EPSCOR has approved Dr. Wiest's proposal to purchase a Mightex HRS-025 infrared CCD spectrometer system. Dr. Wiest said, "We will use the instrumentation to produce high-resolution energy diagrams of atoms."

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