Davidson, NC 28035
209 Ridge Road
Davidson, NC 28035
Our teaching and research facilities and advanced laboratories have received more than $400,000 in new equipment during the last five years, and we have some of the best equipment in the country for undergraduate research participation.
Our main lecture hall seats 81 even though our class sizes never get above 40 for the introductory sequence. Introductory laboratory sections are limited to 16 students. Our modern physics and advanced classes, such as quantum mechanics and electromagnetism, usually have 15 or fewer students. The large lecture room has all the modern technological capabilities for teaching. Our small classroom seats 24 and is similarly equipped.
Designed specifically for physics study (including data collection and analysis and multimedia learning), our computers are replaced every three years to maintain power, speed and accuracy. See below for further information regarding the computers designed for physics majors.
The Physics Department has research opportunities for undergraduates in the areas of computational, experimental, and theoretical physics. The experimental research is concentrated on two of the most active and exciting areas in current research: solid state and laser spectroscopy.
Although you may not know what these pieces of equipment are now, rest assured that hands-on experience is highly valued at Davidson. Our equipment is not locked away and accessible only to faculty, but is a useful and used component of a Davidson undergraduate education. Short on space, we'll describe one such research setup below: the Nd/YAG-pumped OPO laser system.
There are perhaps only a dozen or so Nd/YAG-pumped OPO laser systems in the United States capable of producing very short (10-8 sec) light pulses from the infrared to the ultraviolet with a peak power of 10 million watts, and we have one of them. While students at other schools probably wouldn't see such equipment until graduate school, Davidson students are working with equipment like this from sophomore year on. Light from this laser system is scattered from materials that Davidson students make and is collected and analyzed by:
Other key equipment includes a passively stabilized Ti-dye ring laser and a DSC/TGA for calorimetry with microgram resolution.
The Physics Resource Center (PRC) is used by physics majors and majors from other departments for senior projects and other research. The PRC reflects the convergence of scientific computing technologies toward visual and object-oriented programming paradigms and is equipped with the following.
For additional information, please contact Prof. Wolfgang Christian and schedule an appointment. We welcome your visit at any time.