I am an Assistant Professor of physics at Indiana State University. From 2014-2018, I was a Visiting Assistant Professor at Macalester College.
I study theoretical nuclear physics. In particular, I am interested in strongly-interacting regimes where traditional techniques of particle and nuclear physics cannot be applied.
One such situation occurs when nuclear matter is brought to extremely high temperatures of about a trillion degrees and nuclei “melt.” This creates a new state of matter known as the quark-gluon plasma (QGP). Experimentally, this phase is created in particle accelerators that collide heavy ions such as gold or uranium.
To study the conditions that cause nuclei to melt, as well as the properties of the QGP, I use an extra-dimensional model inspired by string theory (known by various names including AdS/CFT, AdS/QCD, and holographic QCD). Surprisingly, working in 5 dimensions makes the math easier! I also use computational techniques to analyze the outcomes of this model.
In my teaching, I encourage students to confront their pre-existing mental models for how the world works. This takes the form of context-rich group problems and using computational techniques to explore interesting problems inaccessible through pencil-and-paper techniques.
Please see my Current CV (updated June 2020).