Summer 2017 Newsletter

The Fall 2017 Meeting of the Ohio-region Section of the APS will be Hosted by Miami University, Oxford, OH, Department of Physics on Oct. 13 - 14

The theme for this meeting will be “Quantum Information

Plenary Speakers:

Francisco Elohim Becerra (University of New Mexico)
Shohini Ghosh (Wilfrid Laurier University, Canada)
Benjamin Schumacher (Kenyon College, OH)
Katharina Gillen (California Polytechnic State University)
SOS-AAPT Invited Speaker, Tom Foster (Southern Illinois University)

Pre-registration for the meeting and banquet, and abstract submission is currently OPEN and abstract submission deadline is September 15, 2017.
Make hotel reservations as soon as possible.

Students who present oral presentations at the OSAPS meeting are eligible for travel support from the OSAPS. The amount of the travel grant is up to $100 per student. See meeting website for details.

Report from the Spring 2017 Meeting of the OSAPS at Eastern Michigan State University

The OSAPS 2017 Spring Meeting had the theme “Computational Physics” and was held at Eastern Michigan University (EMU) on May 5-6 2017. The theme of the meeting was manifest in the topics of the invited presentations, which covered networks, avalanches, metal alloys for the auto industry, and integrating computation into physics curricula. A total of 96 people registered for the meeting, and 57 presentations were given.

OSAPS 2017 Spring Meeting Registration graph

OSAPS 2017 Spring Meeting Presentations graph

Eastern Michigan campus image

Eastern Michigan campus image 2

Eastern Michigan campus image 3

Dr. Steve Pernecky, Associate Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at EMU, started the meeting with brief welcoming remarks just before the first plenary session. Prof. Mark Newman from the University of Michigan presented “The Statistical Physics of Networks,” introducing us to fundamental network concepts, showing examples of social, ecological, and biochemical networks, and how one characterizes such networks. Prof. Danny Caballero from Michigan State University presented “How might Physics Education Research facilitate the coming computational revolution?”, describing his work on integrating computation into physics courses and shared some initial results from a national survey on practices in physics departments to include computation. The first plenary session was followed by a poster session in which 27 posters were presented, and then by the dinner banquet, held in McKenny Hall. Dr. Bita Ghaffari from the Ford Motor Company presented “Computational Physics in the Auto Industry” after the banquet, describing her journey from atomic physicist working on Bose-Einstein condensates to industrial physicist using density functional theory to predict the properties of metal alloys needed in the auto industry. The post-presentation discussion especially highlighted the skills that physics students need to make a successful entry to industrial employment.

The meeting continued on Saturday morning, May 6, with six contributed sessions, consisting of 25 presentations. The meeting concluded with the second plenary session. The first talk of this session was given by Prof. Karin Dahmen from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Her presentation, “Universal Slip Statistics: From Nanocrystals to Earthquakes?” described how conceptually simple mean field models can be used to describe a wide range of phenomena, including stress-induced material deformation and the size distribution of avalanches and earthquakes. Prof. Kelly Roos from Bradley University presented “Integrating Computational Activities into Undergraduate Physics Courses”, describing his work to integrate computation into his courses, as well as his work with the Partnership to Integrate Computation in Undergraduate Physics (PICUP) to develop a network of instructors to generate instructional materials for use across the entire range of physics curricula.

Two additional events took place on Saturday afternoon after the formal close of the meeting. First, Prof. Roos ran a PICUP workshop (11 participants) to highlight the materials that have been generated to date and also led workshop participants through a foundational example of computing the trajectory of a ball dropping without, and then with, drag. Second, Prof. Natthi Sharma of EMU led an Optics Lab Tour (3 participants) to demonstrate the advanced experiments to quantify dipole scattering, polarization phenomena, and laser modes.

The Local Organizing Committee for the OSAPS 2017 Spring Meeting consisted of Profs. Eric Paradis, Dave Pawlowski, Jon Skuza, and Ernie Behringer (chair). Students Brandon Laycock, Brendan Pickard, and Ryan Walker provided much-needed help during the meeting. The EMU Office of the Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences (CAS) provided significant support by providing convenient spaces for the sessions at no cost. The financial summary of the meeting follows.

Professor Dahmen

Professor Roos

Photos: (Top) Prof. Dahmen. (Bottom) Prof. Roos.

OSAPS Spring Election Results

OSAPS held their annual election cycle last Winter and our newly elected members of the OSAPS Executive Committee are given below.

Vice-Chair: Roy Day, John Carroll Univ.
Treasurer: Donald Priour, Youngstown State Univ.
Student Member-at-Large: Matthew Mircovich

We also want to thank our outgoing Executive Committee officers for their generous and excellent service. Roy Day finished two 3-year terms as Treasurer, and Michael McMaster, graduate student at Case Western Reserve University, finished a 3-year term as student Member-at-Large

Upcoming Meetings

Oct. 13-14, 2017: Miami University, Oxford, OH
Mar. 23-24, 2018: Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI
Fall 2018: University of Toledo, Toledo, OH
Mar. 29-30, 2019: College of Wooster, Wooster, OH

If you would like to explore the possibility of hosting a future meeting, please contact Vice Chair Roy Day,

Help Spread the Word about OSAPS

Not all APS members living in the Ohio Region (Ohio, Michigan and Indiana) are OSAPS members. Talk to your colleagues and let them know that membership in OSAPS is free and allows the section to continue in its efforts of providing quality meetings and active communications with its members through mailings, newsletters and email. OSAPS offers physicists the opportunity to attend multi-disciplinary meetings to discuss important research with your colleagues within the region, and it provides an excellent opportunity for both undergraduate and graduate students to present their research results. As most members reside or work in this area, participation in sectional meetings has the additional benefit of economy; this is particularly important for students. To join OSAPS, go to Member Services or contact a Membership Representative at 301-209-3280.

OSAPS Executive Committee

Chair: Snjezana Balaz ( 05/17 - 04/18)
Youngstown State Univ

Chair-Elect: Petru Fodor ( 05/17 - 04/18)
Cleveland State Univ

Vice Chair: Anthony Day ( 05/17 - 04/18)
John Carroll Univ

Past Chair: Jeffrey Dyck ( 05/17 - 04/18)
John Carroll Univ

Secretary: Ulrich Zurcher ( 05/16 - 04/19)
Cleveland State Univ

Treasurer: Donald Priour ( 05/17 - 04/20)
Youngstown State Univ

Member-at-Large: Julie Roche ( 05/15 - 04/18)
Ohio Univ

Member-at-Large: Jay Mathews ( 05/16 - 04/19)
Univ of Dayton

Student Member: Matthew Mircovich ( 05/17 - 04/18)
Univ of Dayton

Non-voting Officials and Special Appointees:

Honors & Awards Chair: Robert L. Hengehold
Air Force Institute of Technology

Ombudsman: Ronald Winters
Denison University

Webmaster: Perry P. Yaney
University of Dayton

This OSAPS newsletter was edited by Jeff Dyck, OSAPS past-chair.

The articles in this newsletter represent the views of their author(s) and are not necessarily those of the Unit or APS.