Ph.D., 1999 - The University of Heidelberg
Louisiana State University
Department of Physics & Astronomy
220-C Nicholson Hall, Tower Dr.
Baton Rouge, LA 70803-4001
My principal research interest is in experimental particle and astro-particle physics. I am primarily interested in neutrino physics because neutrinos are a good probe to test for physics beyond the successful standard model of particle physics. In addition neutrinos serve as messengers from the Sun and other astrophysical objects.
My present research focuses on the study of neutrino oscillations using neutrino beams and very large detectors. The Tokai to Kamioka (T2K) experiment is located in Japan. It utilizes a high intensity muon neutrino beam directed into the Earth and towards the Super-Kamiokande detector to measure neutrino oscillation parameters. Recently, we observed the transformation of muon neutrinos into electron neutrinos. These measurements allowed us to determine the magnitude of this type of neutrino oscillation. Furthermore they revealed a first glimpse at CP violation properties of neutrinos, that is an asymmetry in the behavior of neutrinos and their anti-matter partners.
The study of neutrinos requires sophisticated and large particle detectors. I also work on the development and construction of particle and photon detectors for future experiments. New technology helps improve the sensitivity of future measurements in subatomic physics.
We are involved in research and development of the Deep Underground Neutrino Experiment (DUNE) which will use liquid argon detection technology to observe neutrinos. The project aims to have excellent sensitivity to CP violation in neutrinos and we will also perform measurements to determine the neutrino mass hierarchy. We are involved in a small scale liquid argon (LAr) prototype detector at Fermilab and are leading an effort to build a full-scale LAr prototype in a charged particle beam at CERN.
Previously, I have worked on the K2K experiment, a 1st generation neutrino long baseline experiment and at the Sudbury Neutrino Observatory (SNO). SNO was a solar neutrino experiment. We measured the flavor content of the solar neutrino flux and thereby established neutrino flavor transformation as the solution to the 30 year old solar neutrino problem. Amongst others, I led a search for electron antineutrinos with the SNO detector, an analysis that was directly aimed to look for "new physics" phenomena such as a neutrino magnetic moment and neutrino decay.