Physics Department Seminar University of Alaska Fairbanks

J O U R N A L    C L U B

Summer Undergraduate Research Finale
Short reports by UAF Physics majors on their summer projects. SURF's up!

Jason Turnquist: Observing HAARP Stimulated Plasma Lines
I used the Geophysical Institute's multiband receiver in conjunction with the diagnostic radar (MUIR) to observe and compare the power and number of artificially enhanced up-shifted and down-shifted plasma lines produced using varying power of the HF heater located at HAARP. 

Ryan Rankin: Hot Times with Geologists
The Geology Department needed a furnace that could precisely control the oxygen fugacity, in order to determine the phase diagrams of various silicate melts. I designed and built a novel furnace. 

Mindy Krzykowski: HAARP-generated VLF signals as Probe Waves
Field measurements were made to test the feasibility of using HAARP stimulated ionospheric emissions of Very Low Frequency (VLF) electromagnetic signals, as probe waves for geophysical studies. Initial analysis indicates HAARP-generated VLF signals have the signal strength necessary for use as probe waves in geophysical field studies. 

Jason McDonald: modeling cusp particle acceleration
Particle acceleration in the cusp region of the magnetosphere is a significant process for many features of the aurora. I programed some tools to look at particle acceleration; our results suggest that the phase space (space and velocity) regions responsible for this acceleration are much large than expected. 

Keegan Keplinger: Infrasonic Power Spectral Density Studies
I studied remote infrasound sensing with the Geophysical Institute Infrasound Group. First, using signals from the IS55 array at Windless Bight Antarctica, I studied Mt. Erebus. Then, using signals from the IS53 array in Fairbanks, I studied whether infrasound can be used to locate lightning strikes in bush Alaska. I found two frequency bands that result from lightning. 

Tran Smyth: What Makes Peacock Feathers Colorful?
The iridescence of peacock feathers is fascinating because of the range of colors and their brightness. Pigmentation usually does not give rise to such iridescence. We explored the cross-sections of the feather and used optical simulation to uncover the underlying natural phenomena. On the perimeter of the feathers are the ends of thousands of melanin rods separated by cylindrical air gaps. We believe that these rods and gaps form a 2½-D photonic crystal. 

Friday, 28 September 2007
Globe Room, Elvey Building
3:45 PM