New laboratory director Dr. Michael Witherell.
LBNL welcomes Dr. Michael Witherell as the new laboratory director. Witherell comes to LBNL from UC Santa Barbara, where he was Vice Chancellor for Research. Before that, he served as the director of Fermilab. Witherell is a particle physics by training, with many interests, some of which overlap with NSD, that abut those in NSD, most notably collider physics and low-background experiments.
Two new postdocs have joined the nuclear structure group in the past few weeks. Dr. Marco Salathe (right) comes from the Max-Planck-Institut für Kernphysik Heidelberg, where he worked on detector development as a member of the GERDA collaboration. He is now working on an LDRD project investigating a novel detector design for future gamma-ray tracking arrays using segmented inverted point contact detectors. Dr. Michael Jones joins the group from Michigan State University and the National Superconducting Cyclotron Laboratory, where he did his PhD research in neutron spectroscopy. He’s now switching gears to the wonderful world of gamma-rays and the analysis of GRETINA data, studying the nature of the low-energy enhancement in the gamma-ray strength functions of 56Fe.
Dr. Leonardo Milano has joined the RNC group, where he is working with Peter Jacobs on particle and jet correlations in ALICE, studying Pb-Pb collisions and in smaller systems such as high multiplicity p-Pb and pp collisions. After receiving his PhD from the University of Turin in 2013, where he worked on low pT particle identification, he joined CERN as research fellow. He is the coordinator of the “Correlation and event-by-event” analysis group of the ALICE Collaboration.
The NSD CUORE group welcomes two new postdocs: Drs. Benjamin Schmidt (left) and Brad Welliver (right). Dr. Schmidt received his Ph.D. in 2015 from the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology where he searched for dark matter with EDELWEISS. Dr. Schmidt was awarded the prestigious Helmholtz Doktorandenpreis (Helmholtz Doctoral Award) for his thesis. Dr. Welliver received his Ph.D. in 2016 from the University of Florida for a dark matter search with SuperCDMS. Drs. Schmidt and Welliver will be involved with CUORE commissioning, operations, and data analysis. They will also apply their experience with cryogenic detectors in performing R&D for CUPID (Cuore Upgrade with Particle ID), the next generation CUORE-like bolometric experiment to search for neutrinoless double beta decay and other rare events.
Several new people have joined the Nuclear Theory Program. Last September Dr. André Walker-Loud (left) returned to LBNL from William and Mary, where had been a tenure track assistant professor, and a holder of a DOE career award. André will lead our effort in Lattice QCD for nuclear systems. His early career award supports Dr. Chia Cheng (Jason) Chang (right), who has joined the lattice effort. Jason received his PhD from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, where he calculated the matrix elements for neutral heavy-light meson mixing using lattice QCD methods.
The Nuclear Theory program also welcomes two visiting postdoctoral fellows, Drs. Yong Zhao (right) and Nils Strodthoff. Yong graduated in 2015 from the University of Maryland, where he studied the QCD structure of hadrons with Prof. Ji. Nils arrived in January for a two-year stay, supported by a fellowship from the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG). He received is PhD from the University of Darmstadt Germany in 2012 and spent the last three years in Heidelberg as a postdoc. His research focuses on applications of functional renormalization group methods to explore the properties of strongly interacting matter, in particular the QCD phase diagram and aspects of chiral symmetry.
New ANP program officer Erika Suzuki.
NSD’s Applied Nuclear Physics Program and the Institute for Resilient Communities welcome Erika Suzuki, as a Program Officer working with Kai Vetter. She formerly served as the Program Manager of the Nuclear Science and Security Consortium and Deputy Director of the Nuclear Policy Working Group at the University of California, Berkeley.