University of Washington, 1991, Isospin mixing in giant dipole resonances, advisor Kurt Snover
Postdoc at SUNY Stony Brook with Gene Sprouse
Postdoc at Simon Fraser with Otto Hausser, mostly on laser traps for radioactive atoms.
We use laser trapping and cooling techniques with a table-top sized apparatus to precisely test the Standard Model of the weak interaction.
Radioactively decaying atoms are trapped in a 1 mm-sized cloud. These undergo nuclear beta decay, producing 3 products: a positron, a neutrino and a recoiling final nucleus. Although the nucleus has a very low energy, it escapes freely from the trap, and by detecting it in coincidence with the positron, we can reconstruct the neutrino momentum.
The Standard Model predicts the angular distribution of the neutrinos with respect to the positrons, and by accurately measuring this we can look for new forces not in the Standard Model.
We have pioneered these techniques, and now are polarizing the atoms, to test whether parity is fully violated in the weak interaction. I.e. we ask the question: "Is Nature completely left-handed?"
We are also trapping francium atoms, the heaviest alkali atom, with an eventual goal of measuring weak neutral current effects in atoms.