2018 UCR Summer Physics Teacher Academy

SPTA 2018 is hosted by the UCR Department of Physics & Astronomy and California Science Project. Lectures are in the University of California, Riverside, Physics Building, Reading Room 3035.

Schedule of Presentations

Monday, June 25

8:00am Coffee & Networking
8:30am Opening Welcome Prof. Ken Barish (Dept. Chair)
9:00am Physics Refresher Electromagnetism Prof. Allen Mills
11:00am Break
11:20am Research Lecture Control and Applications of Complex Quantum Systems Prof. Borge Hemmerling
12:00pm Lunch
1:00pm Research Lecture Nanotechnology Prof. Nathan Gabor
2:00pm Teaching Physics Laser diffraction lab: finding the thickness of a human hair Dr. Daniel McKinney

Tuesday, June 26

8:00am Coffee & Networking
8:30am Physics Refresher Introduction to PhETs (online demos) Prof. Michael Anderson
11:00am Research Lecture From the Big Bang to 2018 Dr. Peter Creasey
12:00pm Lunch
1:00pm Teaching Physics Preparing for college science classes Prof. Michael Anderson
2:00pm Teaching Physics Properties of permanent magnets and magnetic resonance demo Dr. Daniel McKinney
Wednesday, June 27
8:00am Coffee & Networking
8:30am Research Lecture Duality Prof. Michael Mulligan
9:30am Research Lecture Topological Materials Prof. Peng Wei
11:30am Lunch
12:30pm Research Lecture Surface Physics Prof. Jory Yarmoff
1:30pm Teaching Physics Surface X Lab Dr. Daniel McKinney
Thursday, June 28
8:00am Coffee & Networking
8:30am Physics Refresher Classical Mechanics Prof. Brian Siana
10:30am Break
10:50am Teaching Physics Using the tracker program and other video analysis options in studying motion Dr. Daniel McKinney
12:00pm Lunch
1:00pm Lab Research Experience
Lab Tour Barsukov Lab
Lab Tour Lui Lab
Lab Tour Gabor Lab
Lab Tour Cui Lab
Lab Tour Mills Lab
Lab Tour Wei Lab
Friday, June 29
8:00am Coffee & Networking
8:30am Research Lecture 2D Materials Prof. Joshua Lui
9:30am Teaching Physics Physics of the Universe in the California Science Framework Dr. Maria Simani
10:30am Teaching Physics Resources for the Physics of the Universe Dr. Daniel McKinney
12:00pm Lunch
1:00pm Teaching Physics Standard Model activity and modeling fusion lab Daniel McKinney
2:00pm Teaching Physics Demo Exchange All Participants

Lab Tour Information

Barsukov Lab

Prof. Igor Barsukov's Lab focuses on experimental condensed matter physics and spintronics in particular. We design magnetic nanoscale devices and study spin dynamics and spin transport using microwave/terahertz spectroscopy. The goal of this research is to better understand the interplay of magnons and phonons and to develop energy-efficient spintronics applications. (Room 0178 MSE Building, Phone: 951-827-5389)

Lui Lab

The Lui group focuses on laser spectroscopy and Ultrafast science of Innovative materials.  In particular, we are interested in the electron, phonon and spin dynamics in novel two-dimensional systems, such as graphene, boron nitride and transition-metal dichalcogenides, as well as heterogeneous structures formed from these atomically thin materials.  Our experimental techniques include Raman, infrared, terahertz, and ultrafast pump-probe spectroscopy and imaging.  Our research also involves state-of-the-art nanoscale device fabrication and new methods of material fabrication, characterization and manipulation. (Room 0172 MSE Building, Phone: 347-839-5818)

Gabor Lab

Our group is interested in the discovery of new quantum phenomena in atomically thin two-dimensional (2D) electronic materials including graphene, hexagonal boron nitride, and layered transition metal chalcogenides. These materials, many of which can be separated into few or single atomic layers, exhibit quasi-low dimensionality that may lead to strongly correlated electron behavior. Among correlated electronic materials, true 2D materials provide the distinct advantage that they are one atom thick, thus allowing the utilization of techniques generally applied to small atomic ensembles, such as laser-cooling and optical cavity coupling. By incorporating these materials into nanoscale electronic devices, we envision a distinct field of research that explores atomically thin condensed matter systems using precision techniques and concepts employed in atomic, molecular, and optical physics. (Room 0314, MSE Building, 951-827-5338)

Cui Lab

Our research group study quantum materials that exhibit fascinating electrical and magnetic properties, with the focus on probing and manipulating such properties on the nanoscale. We apply a variety of state-of-art experimental tools such as scanning probe microscopy, quantum transport, and nanofabrication. Among these, microwave techniques provide a powerful means to interact with materials and characterize their electro-magnetic response. By combining these methods, we aim to achieve a comprehensive understanding of the underlying physics in these materials and apply them to realize new device concepts and functionalities. (Room 055, MSE Building, Phone 951-827-5395)

Mills Lab

The research in the positron laboratory is mainly focused on dense positronium physics, with the long term goal of creating a Bose-Einstein condensation of Ps, and thence an annihilation gamma ray laser. This is an ambitious project, fraught with experimental difficulties, and has already necessitated the development of new experimental techniques. Positronium is a hydrogen-like meta-stable atom composed of an electron and its antiparticle, the positron. These atoms are very similar to hydrogen atoms in their gross structure but, being composed of a particle and its antiparticle, which may annihilate with one another, are inherently unstable. (Room 1153, Physics Building, Phone: 951-827-6469)

Wei Lab

Our research emphasizes on emerging quantum coherent phenomena in low-dimensional materials. We aim to enhance the life-time of the quantum states, including orbital, spin etc., of charge carriers e.g. electrons in solid state systems so that quantum coherence becomes robust and free from material imperfections. In particular, we thrive to create novel topologically protected quasiparticles by combining electron correlation, topological order and dimensionality under atomic level at the ultra-clean interface of material heterostructures. Understanding and controlling such topological quantum particles is our goal. Our lab features two molecular beam epitaxy systems (MBE) that allow us to synthesize sophisticated heterostructures among materials having drastically dislike properties. One of the MBE, a hybrid system, together with a custom designed glove box have the capability of producing nano-scale devices in-situ assisted by ultra-high vacuum suitcases. We study the quantum phenomena at mK temperature and high magnetic field.


First Last School Name District Name
Mary Aldern Mr. Whitney HS Visalia Unified SD
Jennifer Brenner Springs Charter School, Temecula Student Center Riverside County Office of Education
Boma Briggs Barstow Junior High School Barstow Unified School District
Velouria Bustos Citrus Hill High School Val Verde Unified
Maria Cuevas Delgado Hawthorne High School Centinela Valley Union High School District
Kathy Dao Rancho Verde HS Val Verde Unified
Luminita Denisiu south high Torrance Unifiedschool District
Valerie Gennrich Trona High School Trona Joint Unified School District
Dan Gillam Tehachapi High School Tehachapi Unified School District
Paul Hannosh Inspire Charter School Acton
Carol Howell Covina High School Covina-Valley Unified School District
Jorge Huizar Western Center Academy Hemet Unified School District
Shawn Kirby Palm Springs High School Palm Springs Unified School District
Jon Klaus Northview High School Covina-Valley Unified School District
Mandana Kompani Live Oak High School Morgan Hill Unified School District
Elsie La Salle Valley View High School Moreno Valley Unified School District
Leah Luchsinger Seaside High School Monterey Peninsula Unified School district
Salvador Martinez Nuview Bridge Early College High School Nuview Union School District
John Matulich Wilmer Amina Carter High School Rialto Unified School District
Kevin McBride-Luman Weber Technical Institute Stockton Unified School District
Stephen Park Bishop Union High School Bishop Unified School District
Sasha Pierce Tahquitz High School Hemet Unified School District
Catherine Sanchez Carter High School Rialto Unified School District
Omar Shepherd Orange County Department of Education - SVUSD - Silverado H.S. OCDE/SVUSD
Jing Han Soh Ceiba College Prep Pajaro Valley Unified School District (PVUSD)
Laurel Taylor Lone Pine High School Lone Pine Unified School District
Tom Traeger Duarte High School Duarte Unified
Barry Walsh El Rancho ERUSD

Previous years


Contact Information

Please e-mail Professor Yu () or Dr. Maria Simani () for more information.

This website was designed by and is maintained by Professor Flip Tanedo ().

Ucr Logo White © UC Riverside Physics. All rights reserved.