Labs and Equipment

Whether enrolled in physics courses or engaged in research with faculty, our students have access to state-of-the-art, modern facilities and equipment that rival that of many research universities. The Shiley Center for Science and Technology opened in 2003 with all new laboratories and equipment designed to support learning, faculty-student research and interdisciplinary endeavors. Faculty research labs, student labs, and interdisciplinary shared spaces are all equipped with top-of-the-line equipment and facilities that allow students to be trained in cutting-edge experimental techniques that prepare them for success in future careers.

Partial Instrument List

  • Laser spectroscopy laboratory (with diode lasers, optical parametric oscillators, gas lasers, monochrometer, etc.)

  • Force-measuring optical tweezers

  • Laser scanning confocal microscope (shared)

  • Epifluorescence and brightfield microscopes

  • Light-sheet fluorescence microscope

  • Fiber-coupled infrared lasers and diode lasers

  • High-CPU computational cluster

  • Computer suite equipped with LabView and MATLAB data acquisition software

  • Plasma vacuum chambers equipped with high-vacuum pumping stations

  • Fume hoods equipped with vacuum, air, and gas hoses in all lab spaces

  • Pulsed Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) apparatus

  • Atomic force microscope (AFM) for nanometer-scale surface imaging

  • PASCO computer data acquisition systems

  • Fully equipped machine shop, including digital mill and lathe

Other Facilities

Other facilities include:

  • 2 advanced teaching laboratories
  • 5 faculty research laboratories
  • the H-bar--the room in which physics majors hang out, do homework, and provide free tutoring for lower division courses
  • 7 faculty offices where we foster meaningful relationships with our students--holding office hours, advising students, and mentoring research projects. Our students often remark how comfortable and welcome they feel to talk with faculty about physics, classes, their future career path, and their lives!