MGA Math Professor Spends Summer at Federal Research Facility

Author: News Bureau
Posted: Thursday, September 8, 2016 6:19 PM
Categories: Pressroom | College of Arts and Sciences

Macon, GA

Dr. David Vogel, associate professor of Math at Middle Georgia State University, spent summer 2016 as a faculty scholar at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, a federal research facility in Livermore, Calif., founded by the University of California.

As a member of the Electron Beam Ion Trap (EBIT) group, Vogel conducted observations of x-rays emitted by highly charged molybdenum ions (Mo32+).

EBIT generates a high-current beam of electrons at energies up to 30 kilovolts, which can produce positively charged ions from any element from hydrogen to uranium. The data collected support research into controlled nuclear fusion. Livermore’s National Ignition Facility is at the forefront of the national program to develop alternative energy sources. EBIT measurements are also used to validate atomic structure calculations and to calibrate x-ray lines observed from stars, galaxies and supernova remnants.

Vogel also had the chance to mentor students participating in a two-week long summer school on plasma physics at Lawrence Livermore. The eight students spent several afternoons at the EBIT lab, earning how to operate the system and to analyze x-ray spectra.

A member of MGA's faculty since 2008, Vogel holds bachelor's and master's degrees in Physics from Georgia Tech and a Ph.D. in Atomic Physics from Georgia Tech.

Photo: MGA's Dr. David Vogel, fourth from left, and other research team members, left to right: Greg Brown, radiative properties group leader; Tom Lockard, EBIT post-doctoral fellow; Ed Magee, EBIT lead technician; and Peter Beiersdorfer, LLNL senior scientist.