After completing a thesis in experimental plasma physics in the area of fusion energy at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, he was appointed Assistant Professor of Physics at USD in 1987, becoming a full professor in 1994. He currently serves as Chair of the Department of Physics. His teaching ranges from Physics and Society to Quantum Physics, and he created the first advanced upper division laboratory course, Experimental Modern Physics, in the physics curriculum. His research focuses on experimental basic plasma physics and the use of tunable lasers as a diagnostic for ion dynamics.
Full Time Faculty
Michael Anderson has been at USD since 2009.
Associate Professor, Interim Chair
Rae Anderson joined the Physics faculty at USD in 2009. Anderson’s research explores the molecular dynamics and interactions that give rise to the fascinating properties of biological soft materials. Specifically, Anderson uses both optical trapping and fluorescence microscopy to characterize intermolecular forces and molecular motion in complex systems of entangled DNA molecules and cytoskeleton proteins such as actin. Anderson’s research is funded by an Air Force Young Investigator Program Award and an NSF CAREER Award. Anderson was also recently named a Scialog Fellow by Research Corporation for Science Advancement and the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation.
Office: SCST 278
Ryan McGorty comes to USD in the fall of 2015. Previously, he worked at the University of California, San Francisco as a post-doctoral researcher. There, he worked on new developments in super-resolution and light-sheet microscopy. His doctoral work focused on soft matter physics and the use of digital holographic microscopy. At USD, McGorty will continue to use and develop optical tools to probe soft materials, living or dead. He strongly encourages undergraduates at any level with an interest in doing hands-on research in soft materials, biophysics, instrumentation or optics to work with him.
Full Time Faculty
Linh Pham is an Adjunct Assistant Professor in the Department of Physics where she teaches courses in General Physics, Introduction to Mechanics, Thermodynamics and Wave Motion, and Introduction to Electricity and Magnetism. Her research interest includes theoretical and computational fluid mechanics, turbulence, transport phenomena and environmental flows.
Daniel Sheehan has been a member of the faculty at USD since 1989 and is Professor of Physics. His research interests include the second law of thermodynamics, retrocausation, nanotechnology, plantary formation, and plasma physics.