CLASSE: Student Opportunities

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Remote REU 2021 Projects

Neil Stillin TBD
"Developing components for a new compact SRF cryomodule"

Abstract: Advancements in the development of Nb3Sn films for SRF cavities have created the possibility of efficient 4.2 K operation with low dynamic heat losses. This allows for the use of cryocoolers to cool SRF cavities using conduction cooling rather than liquid helium. At Cornell, we are developing a new SRF cryomodule that utilizes cryocoolers to operate a single-cell 1.3 GHz Nb3Sn cavity. This REU project will work on an important step in this process, which is to design and develop key system components that have low static heat loads at 4.2 K. Reducing the static heat load on the cryocoolers' second stages (at 4.2 K) allows for greater cooling capacity for the dynamic heat loads from cavity operation.

Jim Crittenden, Co-mentor: Suntao Wang TBD
"Numerical Magnet Modeling and Tracking Analysis for the South Arc of the Cornell Electron Storage Ring"

Abstract: The design, fabrication and detailed understanding of static magnetic fields are essential components in the development and operation of particle accelerators.

Material properties and space constraints are among the considerations contributing to the magnet engineering design process. This project will take the participant through the magnet design process, finite-element modeling calculations, and the implementation of these in the lattice model either as field maps or in parameterized form. The full-ring model is used both for beam optics development and for optics correction procedures during operation of the storage ring.

Of particular interest are optics corrections and tracking analysis for the recently-installed magnets in the south arc of the Cornell Electron Storage Ring.

Kirsten Deitrick TBD
"Start-to-end tracking of the Cornell Electron Storage Ring"

Abstract: Start-to-end tracking of accelerators helps to understand beam dynamics, immprove operating conditions, and serve as a starting point when considering machine upgrades. The Cornell Electron Storage Ring consists of different systems, all of which require different considerations and approaches for simulation; additionally, while some parts of the accelerator have been recently upgraded and are well-modeled, other parts have been unchanged for decades and do not have a well-refined model. This project will look at simulating and understanding current beam dynamics through particle tracking, while learning how to improve models by modifying existing simulations to better match measured data from the machine.

Carl Franck TBD
"Simulations for the Design of a Future Atomic Physics Experiment"

Abstract: Recently, our search for the radiation expected to accompany the ejection of an electron from the inner shell of an atom upon the absorption of a high energy photon gave a surprise: it was not present at the expected level (see first recent work item at In order to raise the sensitivity of future searches for such a fundamental radiative process, we need to improve our understanding of the competing multiple scattering effects that involve more than one atom in our solid targets. Our proposed summer REUproject is to perform simulations of photon electron interactions in condensed matter to address this concern.

Chad Pennington & William Li TBD
"Detecting ultrafast phenomena with relativistic electron spectroscopy"

Abstract: Ultrafast electron spectroscopy (UES) opens the door to studying a wealth of phenomena on ultrafast (picosecond or shorter) time scales, such as fast phase and structural changes in solids to exotic phases of quantum matter. One of the major challenges in realizing UES lies in achieving a low emittance, low energy spread electron beam on small spatial and temporal scales. The REU student working on this project will learn to use General Particle Tracer (GPT), a particle tracking code, to simulate an ultrafast electron spectroscopy beamline with beam parameters necessary for UES. The target outcomes of this project are for the REU student to have a valuable experience in gaining an understanding of accelerator and beam physics while contributing to the design of a novel UES beamline with their mentor(s).

Matt Andorf & Sam Levenson TBD
"Control Theory Simulations of an Optical Stochastic Cooling Feedback System"

Abstract: Optical Stochastic Cooling (OSC) is a beam cooling technique that involves propagating light and particles over long distances. Because of the nature of OSC, the light and particles must both have paths that are stabilized and synchronized to one another. The planned system to accomplish this is an Electro-optic modulator (EOM) based feedback system. In order to properly model this system accounting for the pulse structure of detected synchrotron radiation, analytical and numerical models of the planned OSC feedback system will need to be developed and analyzed by the REU student. The project will involve learning basic control theory and how to integrate it with computational tools like Simulink.

Jacob Ruff & Purnima Ghale TBD
"Neural nets inspired by X-ray image analysis"

Abstract: Intended applications have strongly influenced the development of popular neural networks -- consider the influence of computer vision, control theory, and statistical mechanics questions on the current state of Convolutional, Generative-Adversarial, and Restricted Boltzmann Machine neural networks. As we work at CHESS to build custom tools to analyze the reciprocal space of quantum materials, what computational graphs and network architectures do they imply? We seek an REU researcher to help investigate these questions, working at the boundary between x-ray science, materials science, and data science.

Antoine Chapelain TBD
"Development of a web-browser based dashboard display for the next-generation beam position monitor at the Cornell Electron Storage Ring"

Abstract: A beam position monitor (BPM) is a key instrumentation that measures the position of a particle beam within particle accelerators and storage rings. The beam position is the "life pulse" of these very complex machines and is at the core of their daily operation. There are about 120 BPMs deployed around the Cornell Electron Storage Ring (CESR). The measurement precision of the BPMs drives the performance and beam quality achievable by CESR and in turn by the Cornell High Energy Synchrotron Light Source (CHESS).
As both CESR and CHESS are pushing toward higher performance, so do the CESR BPMs (CBPM). The REU student will join the on-going effort to develop the next generation CBPM system and will focus on the software part of the project. The student will help with developing a web-browser based display (dashboard) written in Python3. This includes software development for the front-end (using Plotly Dash module), back-end (using Numpy, Pandas modules) and database interface (using Psycopg2 module to communicate with a PSQL database). A specific project of interest is to develop an asynchronous version of the existing code using the Celery module. This would offer better performance and flexibility over the current blocking version of the code.
Requirements: being familiar with Python3 and having notions of the various modules detailed above

Kate Shanks TBD
"Development of a detector simulation testbench for CHESS timing mode"

Abstract: Experiments that use fast, gated detectors to exploit the pulse structure of storage ring sources allow us to probe the structure and behavior of matter at the picosecond timescale. However, these experiments can push the boundaries of the temporal response of standard area detectors, especially at high photon energies where high-Z and/or thick sensors are required. This project will be centered on developing a suite of code to simulate the sensor and front-end detector electronics response to single bunches of x-rays, with a focus on evaluating detector performance for various fill patterns that have been proposed for a possible CHESS timing mode.

Thomas Oseroff, Michelle Kelley & Nathan Sitaraman TBD
"Numerical estimates of superconducting properties in impurity-doped vanadium"

Abstract: In some cases superconductors irradiated with microwaves will display stronger superconducting properties. For low amplitude and high frequency fields this effect has been explained by redistribution of the excitations in the superconductor to higher energies. In the application of particle beam acceleration three-dimensional superconducting RF (SRF) resonators are designed to create enormous microwave field amplitudes with relatively low frequencies. In this regime the previous picture does not seem applicable yet similar enhancements of the superconducting properties have been observed in niobium resonators with certain surface treatments. Several models have been proposed to explain this phenomenon in this low frequency high field regime but none sufficiently explain experimental results. Beyond scientific curiosity this has practical importance allowing for significantly more efficient accelerators.

Projects are being added; check back periodically for updated project listing. You don't have to wait for all the projects to be posted here to apply - if you get selected for our program, we will contact you further with selection options.