Physics Research

Stellar Spectroscopy

Spectra of stars contain large number of indicators that can be used to derive stellar properties including the surface temperature, the gravity, the content of metals, and the movement of these stars. Through these spectra, we study the chemical composition of stars in clusters of different ages in order to constrain the formation scenario and the evolution of these objects.
Dr. Marwan Gebran is analyzing spectra of stars in different clusters in order to derive their content in C, O, Na, Mg, Si, Ti, Cr, Fe, Y, Sr, Ba, and other indicative elements.


Image and Video Analysis

The computer aided analysis of images allows for data to be extracted which would otherwise be determined subjectively. Further, the analysis of videos allows for the labor-intensive tasks like counting the number of objects in a frame or determining the size of objects to be done quickly and accurately.

Dr. Ian Bentley has collaborated with students on the image analysis of paper analytical devices, developing image and video analysis software and have worked on the analysis of the motion of bats in flight.


Applying Machine Learning and Neural Networks in Astronomy

Astronomical surveys, either spaceborne or ground-based, are gathering an unprecedented amount of data and finding the best tool to analyze the data is one of the purposes of this work. Several techniques are being tested, some are statistical such as principal component analysis, and some are based on convolutional neural networks. 

Dr. Gebran and his students are also researching the best method for determining the most accurate derivation of the temperature, gravity, content of metal, and rotation of stars.


Nuclear Theory

Nuclear physics is about more than just nuclear weapons and nuclear power. Nuclear physics is also at the heart of many technologies used in our everyday life including smoke detectors, and pacemakers. Understanding the energetics associated with nuclear transitions is essential for developing new applications of nuclear physics.

Dr. Bentley also works with students on computational models for various interactions among the nucleons in the nucleus of the atom and to model the evolution of nuclear shell structure.