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Summer 2014 REU Harry Charalambous

The Department of Physics at City College has a long tradition of distinguished faculty and students.  Many of our alumni have achieved prominence in academic, industrial and governmental physics positions; three of them, Arno Penzias, Leon Lederman and Robert Hofstadter, have won the Nobel Prize in Physics.

Today the Department continues to reflect this tradition of scientific excellence. The faculty include members of the National Academies of Sciences and National Academy of Engineering, fellows of the American Physical Society, and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.  They are deeply engaged in cutting-edge research, including biophysics, high-energy physics, condensed matter and soft-condensed matter physics, ultrafast spectroscopy and photonics, to name just a few.

Physics students pursue bachelors, masters and doctoral degrees at City College.  Whether they are modeling DNA molecules, working with MRI and CAT scans, building lasers or working with computers, they are preparing for the jobs and opportunities that will dominate the 21st century.



October is Physics Majors Month

As The City College celebrates Majors Month, the Physics Department celebrates Physics Majors.  Beginning Tuesday, October 7, students and faculty will give brief explanations of their work and experiences as physicists.  All students are welcome to attend these special sessions and learn about opportunities in careers in Physics.  The schedule is evolving. If you would like more information or to volunteer to give a presentation, please contact Prof. Vinod Menon.  For the latest news, please click here.

Policies of the Future Should Not Be Tied to Science of the Past | Commentary

By Michael S. Lubell, Sept. 15, 2014

Fighting the last war over again is a bad strategy for future military planning. Using science of the past in crafting technology policies for the future is just as foolish. Yet that’s what’s happening in the debate over refilling the Highway Trust Fund’s depleted financial tank. More...(Published in Roll Call)


Summer 2014 REU report from Harry Charalambous

Harry Charalambous and David Schuster's paper, "Continuous Cryogenic He-3 Adsorption Pump" is the result of Mr. Charalambous' Research Experience for Undergraduates during this summer, 2014. "I did my REU at the University of Chicago. David Schuster was my advisor. He's a professor there who works on low temperature physics, namely circuit quantum electrodynamics using SQUIDS and on the effects of electrons on liquid helium. He's also taken to redesigning the dilution refrigerators used in labs to get to the millikelvin temperature range (he has 2 of them already)."

Giovanni Milione selected as Emil Wolf Outstanding Student

Giovanni Milione has been selected as a finalist in the 2014 Emil Wolf Outstanding Student Paper Competition for his paper titled "Radial and azimuthal polarized vector Bessel beams".
Mr. Milione is a Ph.D. student in the City College of New York's Institute for Ultrafast Spectroscopy and Lasers, and the Physics Department. His mentor is Distinguished Professor Robert R. Alfano.  As a finalist Mr. Milione will read his paper at the Optical Society of America Frontiers in Optics conference in October, 2014.  He was an Emil Wolf Outstanding Student finalist in 2011 and a winner in 2012. 

CCNY Researchers Receive $5 Million in Federal Grants

More than $5 million in federal research grants has been awarded to four City College of New York researchers in the interdisciplinary CUNY Institute for Macromolecular Assemblies. The funding is from the National Institutes of Health (NIH), National Science Foundation (NSF), and Department of Defense (DoD). The recipients, all principal investigators for their respective projects, are

  • Professor Ranajeet Ghose, chemistry; $1,024,780 from the NSF for his five-year project, "Conformational Dynamics and Regulatory Interactions in a Bacteriophage RNA Polymerase Complex."
  • Assistant Professor Reza Khayat, chemistry; $1,373,000 over four years from the NIH SCORE program for the project, "Mechanism of Cellular Recognition and Entry by a Circovirus."
  • Distinguished Professor of Chemistry Ruth Stark, who directs the CUNY Institute for Macromolecular Assemblies (MMA). She has been awarded $1,142,552 over five years by the NSF for her project "Constructing Plant Cuticle Barriers: From Molecular Architecture to Mechanical Integrity."
  • Associate Professor Ronald Koder, physics; four grants totaling $1,655,381 from the NIH, NSF and DoD. Of that, $1,165,493 is a four-year NIH R01 award for his project "Structural and Thermodynamic Features which Govern Enzymatic Nitric Oxide Detoxification." Professor Koder's other awards are two multiple principal investigator NSF grants (each over three years) of $300,000 and $169,888 for the projects, "Collaborative Research: Creating a Conductive Connection between Redox Enzymes" and "Mechanism and Design of Elastomeric Proteins," respectively.  In addition, Professor Koder received a $20,000 subcontract from Phoebus Optoelectronics tied to a one-year Small Business Innovation Research award from the DoD for the research project, "Innovative Concept for Detection and Identification of Biological Toxins."

Nowhere to Hide: Better Non-invasive Detection of Prostate Cancer Using Improved Imaging
Advanced methods for earlier and improved detection of prostate cancer will help physicians provide better prostate cancer management and protect patients with low risk disease from unnecessary treatment.  Says Dr. Wang, "The key feature of our rectal scanning imager is the use of near infrared (NIR) radiation to image the prostate through the rectum. This imaging approach will greatly improve and supplement current (detection) methods of PSA and DRE because the scanning imaging unit and inverse image reconstruction technique can be used to map the internal structure of the prostate, distinguishing cancerous from normal areas." 

The key investigators in the CUNY research group include Distinguished Professor Robert Alfano (Director of the Institute for Ultrafast Spectroscopy and Lasers), Dr. Wubao Wang, and Dr. Yang Pu. The research achievement was made in collaboration with Dr. James Eastham at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, Prof. Samuel Achilefu at Washington University School of Medicine, and Prof. Min Xu at Fairfield University.


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