Akron Phy sics Club


Archive 2015   
      

            
2015  
January  Steven Hauck - Update: MESSENGER Mission to Mercury 
February  Jeffrey Dyck - Thermoelectric materials and nanostructuring approaches to their optimization  
March  Nicole Steinmetz - From Black-Eyed Peas to Biomedical Nanotechnology 
April  Nigel Brush - The Impact of Millennial-Scale Climate Change on Human Cultures
June 

Jay Reynolds - DAWN Spacecraft: Rendezous with Asteroid CERES

September  David Farrell - Music Sweet and Sour 
October 

Traci Buckner - Akron STEM Schools: A Collaborative Community

November  Sergei Lyuksyutov - Graphene fluoride functionalization using high electrostatic fields generated by atomic force microscope tips: Comparison with functionalization of polymers 

    
   
   
   
   

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Akron Physics Club

Newsletter

Meeting Announcement: MONDAY, January 26, 2015 - TANGIER, 6:00 PM



Dr. Steven Hauck, Case Western Reserve University, Department of Geophysics

will be speaking on:

Update: MESSENGER Mission to Mercury

On March 17, 2011 NASA's Mercury Surface Space ENvironment Geochemistry and Ranging (MESSENGER) Mission is scheduled to become the first spacecraft to ever enter orbit about the planet Mercury. Prior to the launch of MESSENGER in August, 2004, the only previous spacecraft visits to Mercury were three flybys by Mariner 10 in 1974 and 1975 resulting in collection of images of ~45% of the planet's surface. The Mariner 10 spacecraft also made the surprising discovery that Mercury also hosts an intrinsic magnetic field. The innermost planet in our Solar System represents an important cornerstone to our understanding of the planet formation and evolution. Among its many enigmas, Mercury is a surprisingly dense planet, implying a much larger ratio of metal to rock in its interior than the other terrestrial planets, with as yet no single clear cause. Mercury's surface also hosts a wide variety of geologic phenomena that suggest an intriguing evolution, ranging from several kilometer high and hundreds of kilometers long tectonic ridges, to varied volcanic features, and potential deposits of volatiles at the north pole. The MESSENGER mission represents a first opportunity to study Mercury up close and in detail to probe its history, its interior, its origins, and extend our understanding of how planets form. We'll discuss the MESSENGER project, its scientific goals, and what we are learning already. Now we will discuss some of the results of the mission. 

THE SPEAKER:
Steven A. Hauck, II is an Associate Professor of Geological Sciences at Case Western Reserve University with a focus in planetary science and geodynamics. Prof. Hauck received his undergraduate training in Aerospace Engineering and Mechanics at the University of Minnesota and doctoral training in Earth and Planetary Sciences at Washington University in St. Louis. His main research interests focus on generically on the exploration of terrestrial planetary bodies and more specifically on the dynamics and history of the interiors of planets. Currently, Prof. Hauck is a Participating Scientist on NASA's MESSENGER Mission to Mercury and involved in the collection and analysis of data on the topographic and gravitational variations of that planet. He is now the Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Geophysical Research - Planets.

Minutes, January 26, 2015

  Joe Gorse introduced his wife Diane. Jack Geick, co-founder was introduced, along with Leon Marker, a long-time member of the Club. Joe Armeo introduced his son Luke who is in high school. John Edgarton introduced his daughter Brianna who is studying geology.

  Program Director Charles Lavan reported that after the February meeting, Dr. Nicole Steinmetz of the Case Western Reserve Biomedical Engineering Department, will speak on March 23. She was a Olympic gold medal winner for Germany, her native country. Jeff St. Clair of WKSU will also have a discussion of his Monday Science radio show at this meeting.

  Dr. Nigel Brush of Ashland University will speak on the physics of Climate change on April 27, and on June 1, Jay Reynolds of Cleland State University will update us on the DAWN mission to various asteroids, which was discussed recently in a "Science Tuesday" article in the New York Times.

  Treasurer Dan Galehouse reported that everything seems to be in order. He later emailed that there were 17 paying members for $340 income and donations of $20 from Darrel Reneker plus $10 from Dr. Armeo. Meals were 22 at $18 for $396 and a net loss of $370 - $396 = $26. The new balance is $321.45 - $26 = $295.45 agreeing with the count.

  Secretary Erdman Mentioned that both the Akron and Hudson Science fairs held on January 24 were successful. The District 5 regional Science Fair is on March 21 at the University of Akron :Student Union. Register for judging at http://www.uakron.edu/wrsd/.

  Chair von Meerwall introduced the speaker: Steven A. Hauck, II is an Associate Professor of Geological Sciences at Case Western Reserve University with a focus in planetary science and geodynamics. Prof. Hauck received his undergraduate training in Aerospace Engineering and Mechanics at the University of Minnesota and doctoral training in Earth and Planetary Sciences at Washington University in St. Louis. His main research interests focus on generically on the exploration of terrestrial planetary bodies and more specifically on the dynamics and history of the interiors of planets. Currently, Prof. Hauck is a Participating Scientist on NASA's MESSENGER Mission to Mercury and involved in the collection and analysis of data on the topographic and gravitational variations of that planet.

NOTES ON THE PRESENTATION BY DR. HAUCK ON

THE MESSENGER MISSION TO MERCURY:

  This will be about things learned from the Messenger Mission. The spacecraft has been in orbit around Mercury since March 2011. The mission provided information on rock erosion on a planet without water or an atmosphere, more detail on the structure of the unexpected magnetic field discovered 40 years ago by Mariner 10, water ice at the poles of the planet, mapping of the entire surface of the planet [Mariner 10 only mapped about one half of Mercury's surface], and other details of the internal planet structure.

  The reason for going to Mercury was that it was the least explored planet in the solar system. It has a temperature swing of over 600 degrees between day and night, the highest density in the solar system in spite of it being the smallest, it has an unusual magnetic field, and it is very hard to see because of its proximity to the sun. Mercury rotates 3 times for every two revolutions around the sun. Sodium, potassium, and calcium were discovered in the exosphere of Mercury. Details of the time-varying magnetic field, which is about 1% of the earth's magnetic field were observed. More information on how planets are formed, particularly near the sun, was learned.

  Mercury is 2400 kilometers [km] in radius vs. the 3400 km radius of Mars, 6400 km radius of earth. Mercury and Mars have the same surface gravity, in spite of the smaller diameter, due to the higher density of Mercury. Now the entire planet has been mapped at 150 meters per pixel, some areas as close as 3 meters per pixel. The initial orbit of the Messenger spacecraft varied from 400 km above the surface to 15,000 km above the surface. By analyzing color reflections from the surface, things can be learned about minerals on the surface. "Crater rays" come from craters as they ejected material on impact. These are also seen on the moon. They erode over time due to weathering and their composition may be changed by radiation. So these can give some indication of the age of a given crater.

  One interesting surface artifact is a crazed pattern that looks like it was etched by acid; nothing like this appear on the moon. It is suspected that some portion of the material sublimed and was lost. The depressed flat areas are surrounded by cliffs about 20-50 meters high. No impact craters were observed on the smooth floor. The specific cause of these is not completely known; there are a few competing theories. They have similarities to frozen carbon dioxide caps on Mars.

  There is a lot of evidence that there were volcanoes on Mercury. These include streamlined islands in what was lava flow rivers and various surface topographies indicating lava flow. Radar images showed some bright reflections from polar areas, which turned out to be craters that may never have seen sunlight. The fact that most of the faults are from compression on the surface, not extension, indicates that the diameter of Mercury is decreasing.

  In order to make a topographical map of the whole planet, optical interferometers were used on the northern hemisphere, but the distance to the surface was too great to use this technique on the southern hemisphere, where the radio signals back to earth were used. The tallest surface features are 6-8 km high. Some areas showed bright spots at certain locations, which could be a more reflective surface due to ice formation. Some dark spots could be from residue of impact of a comet. Caloris is the large basin on Mercury, 1550 km across. It is suspected that it was formed by an asteroid impact which melted rock, then the molten lava formed a lake, making a smooth surface rather than ejecting debris from the impact. There is also circumstantial evidence that there may be some water ice on Mercury near the polar cap.

  Because of the rotation being in ratio of 3:2 compared to Mercury's revolution around the sun, at some locations there are two sunrises and sunsets per day. Another interesting finding was that the magnetic field axis is not quite aligned with the rotation axis, and the center of the magnetic dipole was some 400km north of the center of Mercury. The high density of Mercury indicated a high concentration of iron, which is about twice the density of rock. Measurements made by Messenger indicated little iron at the surface; it is felt that most of the iron is near the center.

  Messenger was funded to take data for one year in orbit. At the end the end of that year, funding was extended so that data could be taken until fuel ran out. Recently it was found that some thrust can be obtained by releasing helium from the fuel tanks, and this is expected to extend the time in orbit by a month, so it will crash in to the surface on the far side of Mercury in April 2015 rather than March. While NASA is not planning future missions to Mercury, Japanese and European spacecraft are planned to orbit Mercury by 2023.

  Questions included the status of ion drives, which did not show any significant advantage over the chemical propulsion used in Messenger. By rotating the spacecraft, it was determined that at some orientations, the spacecraft could be steered using solar sailing. This is the first time this has been used. It was mainly used to make fine directional adjustments after a burn, and has much lower risk than corrections made by doing small burns.

We thanked the speaker with applause.

Bob Erdman, Secretary

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Akron Physics Club

Newsletter

Meeting Announcement: MONDAY, February 23, 2015 - TANGIER, 6:00 PM



Dr. Professor Jeffrey Dyck, John Carroll University Department of Physics

will be speaking on:

Thermoelectric materials and nanostructuring approaches to their optimization

Abstract:
Thermoelectric materials are the building blocks of solid state devices that convert heat energy into electrical energy or vice versa. The advantages of using solid state devices in refrigeration or power generation applications include a lack of moving parts, the possibility of miniaturization, a long maintenance-free lifetime, and no harmful gases. Because of the poor efficiency of present thermoelectric devices, their use today is mostly limited to niche applications. Over the last decade, increased activity in thermoelectrics research that takes advantage of recent advancements in materials science has resulted in dramatically improved thermoelectric performance. Through introducing nanometer-sized features into a bulk material, it has been demonstrated that thermoelectric efficiency can be increased. In this talk, I will introduce the physics of thermoelectric materials and discuss experiments aimed at optimization of the thermoelectric properties of materials in a variety of ways, including some nanostructuring approaches.

The Speaker:
Professor Dyck received his Ph.D. from Case Western Reserve University in 2000 where he studied the low pressure plasma synthesis and optical characterization of wide-band-gap III-nitride semiconductors. After his doctoral work, Dr. Dyck was a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Michigan where he worked on the transport and magnetic properties of novel thermoelectric and diluted magnetic semiconductor materials. He joined the faculty of John Carroll University [JCU] in August 2003. At JCU, Prof. Dyck’s experimental condensed matter research lab is centered on measurements of low temperature electrical and thermal transport properties of materials, with an aim to reveal underlying electron and phonon conduction mechanisms in order to optimize their properties for potential applications. Prof. Dyck has received funding for his research from Research Corporation and NSF. In addition, he is currently serving as Vice-Chair of the Ohio-Region Section of the American Physical Society.

Minutes, February 23, 2015

Since it was a small group of only 13 of us, we just introduced ourselves. Dr. Joe Armeo and his son Luke returned as did Joe Gorse's wife Diane and Carol Gould. Jack Gieck, Ernst von Meerwall, and Dave Sours were all dealing with medical issues and could not attend.

  Treasurer Dan Galehouse reported that everything seems to be in order. He later emailed that there were 11 paying members for $220 income, we paid our ACESS Dues of $10, and there were 13 meals at $17 each costing $221. Thus the bank balance is $11 lower, $284.95, which agrees with the bank balance in the plastic case.

  After the March meeting, Dr. Nigel Brush of Ashland University will speak on the physics of Climate change on April 27, and on June 1, Jay Reynolds of Cleland State University will update us on the DAWN mission to various asteroids. Jeff St. Clair of WKSU will hold a discussion of his Monday Science radio show at one of these meetings.

  Secretary Erdman Mentioned the District 5 regional Science Fair is on March 21 at the University of Akron Student Union. Register for judging at http://www.uakron.edu/wrsd/.

  From the Astronomy Club of Akron [Received after our meeting]: On Friday, March 27, 2015, NASA Chief Pilot Alan Micklewright, will present "Testing on NASA Aircraft - Helping move Technology out of the Laboratory and into Society". This will be a "bird's-eye" view from the cockpit of an S-3B "Viking" Aircraft used for Earth studies in and around Lake Erie. Meeting location: Portage Lakes Kiwanis Civic Center, 725 Portage Lakes Drive, Akron OH.

  If you wish to attend the dinner with the speaker before the meeting at 93 Prime Anthe's, 4315 Manchester Road Akron, Ohio at 6:15 p.m., r.s.v.p. to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

  Vice-Chair Reneker introduced the speaker: Professor Dyck received his Ph.D. from Case Western Reserve University in 2000 where he studied the low pressure plasma synthesis and optical characterization of wide-band-gap III-nitride semiconductors. After his doctoral work, Dr. Dyck was a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Michigan where he worked on the transport and magnetic properties of novel thermoelectric and diluted magnetic semiconductor materials. He joined the faculty of John Carroll University [JCU] in August 2003 and is now Chair of the Physics Department. At JCU, Prof. Dyck’s experimental condensed matter research lab is centered on measurements of low temperature electrical and thermal transport properties of materials, with an aim to reveal underlying electron and phonon conduction mechanisms in order to optimize their properties for potential applications. Prof. Dyck has received funding for his research from Research Corporation and NSF. In addition, he is currently serving as Vice-Chair of the Ohio-Region Section of the American Physical Society.

NOTES ON THE PRESENTATION BY DR. DYCK ON

Thermoelectric Materials and

Nanostructuring Approaches to Their Optimization

  This will be about thermoelectrics and their applications, the physics underlying their operation and some techniques for optimizing such materials. Thermoelectrics are solid state materials or devices that convert heat energy into electrical energy and vice versa. These are similar to semiconductor devices in that they are small, lightweight, and have no moving parts, gas or liquid required operate. They have a long lifetime and are essentially maintenance free.

  At this point, they are not highly efficient, thus the applications in which they are used are limited and specialized. This include use as a micro thermoelectric gas sensor in a remote unsupervised area, power generation in the NASA Cassini-Huygens mission to Saturn and Titan or from solar or geothermal sources, energy recovery in cars by generating electricity from the heat generated during braking, environmentally friendly air conditioning, spot cooling on small parts such as semiconductors and perhaps ultimately superconductors, and in human-implantable devices.

  There is a correspondence between electrical and thermal parameters. For example given an electrical voltage across a given material, the current flow will be determined by the electrical conductivity [the reciprocal or resistivity] of the material. Likewise, if a temperature differential is applied across a material, the thermal conductivity will determine the heat flux through the material.

  The fundamental effect responsible for the thermoelectric property is the Seebeck effect, which is that a temperature differential will create a voltage differential, since the carriers in a hot medium have lower density than in a cold medium [think of a gas]. The Seebeck Coefficient is simply the ratio of the change in voltage across a bar of material to the change in temperature between the ends of the bar. All conductors have a Seebeck coefficient, some bigger than others. Semiconductor material can have a very high Seebeck effect.

  In a heat engine, heat from a hot reservoir is turned into work by an engine connected between a hot and a cold reservoir. The efficiency is the work output [e.g. electrical power provided by the engine] divided by the heat energy flowing from the hot reservoir through the engine to the cold reservoir. The maximum efficiency is the Carnot efficiency = 1 - (TC/TH) where TC is the temperature of the cold reservoir, and TH the temperature of the hot reservoir. One form of such an engine is a metal plate at temperature TH on which are mounted two thermoelectric elements, one n-type and one p-type. An electrical load is connected to the end not attached to the metal plate, which is at TC. This creates a voltage between the unattached ends of the thermoelectric elements causing a current to flow through the connected resistance and the loop created by this configuration. Using today's materials, a temperature differential [TH - TC] of about 100 degrees C can be created in such a system, and this provides a device efficiency of about 5% with a ZT =1. ZT is a figure of merit proportional so the Seebeck coefficient squared and the electrical conductivity, and inversely proportional to the thermal conductivity. Thermoelectrics would be expected to be in high usage if a ZT of 3 or greater could be obtained with inexpensive abundant materials.

  ZT is maximized when electrical conductivity is high and thermal conductivity is low. The best materials used all had ZT of about 1from the 1970s to the mid or late 1990s. Then new work began to decrease thermal conductivity related to phonon energy and increase electrical conductivity using nanostructuring techniques, which minimize electron/hole scattering, and maximize phonon scattering. This new work involves quantum materials which have high phonon scattering, but low electron/hole scattering. Engines using these materials have achieved ZTs of 2.4. These generally involve structures of many different types in a material that is electrically conductive. The many different boundaries in the material scatter phones very well, but electrical conductivity is very good. Two broad types of investigations of these materials are to pulverize then reconstruct a crystalline substance or to chemically build quantum structures with inherent electrically conductive material formed in structures which easily scatter phonons.

  Dr. Dyck has done a lot of work with tellurium compounds including bismuth and antimony. These are nanocystalline structures consisting of many thin plates compressed together and sintered. Future work will focus on various process techniques such as sintering at various temperatures, in an effort to increase mobility and minimizing the effect of grain boundaries to maximize ZT.

  Question involved whether they had a complete first-principles encompassing theory for this work, band gap calculations, and factors such as multi-valley materials with band curvature, in order to increase the Seebeck effect. It was also noted that there is a problem with supply if the successful material is in short supply. It was pointed out that there is no limit to ZT but the maximum efficiency is the Carnot efficiency. Ideas for maximizing ZT were discussed.

We thanked the speaker with a round of applause.

Bob Erdman, Secretary
 

 

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Akron Physics Club

Newsletter

Meeting Announcement: MONDAY, March 23, 2015 - TANGIER, 6:00 PM



Dr. Nicole Steinmetz, Case Western Reserve University, School of Medicine

will be speaking on:

From Black-Eyed Peas to Biomedical Nanotechnology


Abstract:
Sizing and shaping of nanostructured features with temporal and spatial control is a key opportunity to produce the next-generation of higher-performing products with diverse applications in medicine. Nanoscale self-assembly is a technique that Nature masters with atomic precision; genetic programming provides the highest achievable reproducibility. Therefore we turned toward the study and application of Nature’s nanomaterials, specifically the structures formed by plant viruses. Plant viruses come in many shapes and sizes but most species form highly uniform structures. The nanomanufacturing of plant virus-based biomaterials is highly scalable and economic through molecular farming in plants. Viruses have naturally evolved to deliver cargos to specific cells and tissues; and the medical research thrust in my laboratory is aimed at understanding these natural properties for effectively tailoring tissue-specificity for applications in molecular imaging and therapeutic interventions. In this presentation, I will discuss recent our recent efforts focused at shaping and engineering plant virus based carriers for applications in molecular magnetic resonance imaging as well as drug delivery and immunotherapeutic approaches targeting oncological and cardiovascular diseases.


Biosketch: Nicole F. Steinmetz, Ph.D.:
Dr. Steinmetz is an Assistant Professor of Biomedical Engineering at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, Cleveland, OH, where she is leading a research laboratory interfacing of bio-inspired, molecular engineering approaches with medical research, technology development, and materials science. Recognizing the interdisciplinary nature of the research, Dr. Steinmetz holds secondary appointments and is a trainer in Radiology, Materials Science and Engineering, and Macromolecular Science and Engineering, Pathology, Pharmacology, molecular Virology. Dr. Steinmetz trained at The Scripps Research Institute, La Jolla, CA, John Innes Centre, Norwich, UK (PhD in Bionanotechnology), and RWTH-Aachen University in Germany (Masters in Molecular Biotechnology). Dr. Steinmetz was named a Crain’s Cleveland Business 40 under 40 honoree (2014); in 2011, and was named Mt. Sinai Scholar. She is a 2009 recipient of the NIH/NIBIB Pathway to Independence Grant (K99/R00), a previous American Heart Association Post-doctoral Fellow, (2008-2009) and former Marie Curie Early Stage Training Fellow (2004-2007).

Dr. Steinmetz serves on the Editorial Board of Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews (WIREs) on Nanomedicine and Nanobiotechnology; she serves on the Advisory Editorial Board for the ACS journal Molecular Pharmaceutics. Dr. Steinmetz has chaired symposia at ACS and MRS; she is the Session Chair for the Protein and Viral Nanoparticle Track at FNANO and the Co-Chair of the Gordon Conference of Physical Virology (2015). Dr. Steinmetz has authored more than 60 peer-reviewed journal articles, reviews, and book chapters; she has authored and edited books on Virus-based nanotechnology. Research in the Steinmetz Lab is funded through grants from Federal agencies, National Institute of Health, National Science Foundation, Department of Energy, and private foundations, including Susan G. Komen Foundation and American Heart Association.

Join us for this interesting evening discussing the forefront of biomedical technology

 

Minutes, March 23, 2015

   Dr. Steinmetz introduced Howard Chen, presently a graduate student at the University of Akron. Chair von Meerwall re-introduced Jonah Kirszenberg, our webmaster, who has retired and hopes to attend more meetings.

  Treasurer Dan Galehouse reported that there were 22 paid attendees for $22 x 20 = $440, and
25 meals for $18 x 25 = $450. This is a net loss of $10 considering the speaker
and two students. This brings the balance of $284.45 down to $274.45. A count of money in the box checks with this total.

  Charles Lavan, Program Chair will need some help next year, since he will be spending more time out of state. Jeff St. Clair of WKSU will hold a discussion of his Monday Science radio show, Exploradio, at this meeting. He also mentioned that at the June 1 meeting, Jay Reynolds, who spoke to us about the VESTA Probe to asteroids will update us on data from this mission.

  Secretary Erdman Reported that Dan Galehouse gave a nice summary of our operation at the last ACESS meeting, March 19. The American Institute Archeology, The Microscopy Society of Northeast Ohio and the Rubber division of the American Chemical Society all have now joined ACESS, bringing the membership to 15 societies.

  Chair von Meerwall introduced the speaker:
Dr. Steinmetz is an Assistant Professor at Case Western Reserve University, but has many other secondary appointments. She was named a Crain’s Cleveland Business '40 under 40' honoree. She leads a very interdisciplinary career, involved with many departments. She trained at The Scripps Research Institute, La Jolla, CA, John Innes Centre, Norwich, UK (PhD in Bionanotechnology), and RWTH-Aachen University in Germany (Masters in Molecular Biotechnology). She has chaired symposia at numerous conferences and has been involved in authoring over 60 peer reviewed papers, text book chapters etc. She has obtained many research grants from government, industry, and foundations such as the Susan G. Komen organization. More detail is in the Announcement for the March Meeting.

Bob Erdman, Secretary 

 

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Akron Physics Club

Newsletter

Meeting Announcement: MONDAY, April 27, 2015 - TANGIER, 6:00 PM



Dr. Nigel Brush, Professor of Geology, Ashland University

will be speaking on:

The Impact of Millennial-Scale Climate Change on Human Cultures

 

Abstract:
The Impact of Millennial-Scale Climate Change on Human Cultures:

Based on ice cores from Greenland and sediment cores from the North Atlantic, geologists have identified a pattern of millennial-scale climate change that occurs during both glacial and interglacial stages. These shifts from warmer to cooler conditions occur with a periodicity of 1,470 years. Gerard Bond has identified 9 of these colder phases in the past 12,000 years – the most recent of which was the Little Ice Age (A.D. 1300-1850). Archaeologists, such as V. Gordon Child, have identified a reoccurring pattern of dark ages during which multiple cultures around the world collapse at roughly the same time. The timing of these dark ages identified by archaeologists, seem to correspond with the cold phases identified by the geologists. This connection between climate change and cultural collapse can be traced back at least 4,000 years.


Bio for Nigel Brush:
Dr. Nigel Brush is a Professor of Geology at Ashland University. He holds a Ph.D. in Anthropology from the University of California at Los Angeles, an M.A. in Archaeological Method and Theory from the University of Southampton in England, a B.A. in Anthropology from the Ohio State University, and a B.S. in English Bible from the Cincinnati Bible College. Nigel has taught courses in anthropology, archaeology, geology, and environmental studies at The University of Akron, Kent State University, Ohio State University, The College of Wooster, and Wayne College. He served as curator at the Killbuck Valley Museum of Natural History for 10 years, is currently the director of the Ashland/Wooster/Columbus Archaeological and Geologic Consortium, and has conducted a number of archaeological excavations including the Martin’s Creek Mastodon in Holmes County and the Cedar Fork Mastodon in Morrow County. Nigel has published one book, The Limitations of Scientific Truth (2005) and is currently working on two others: Rockshelters of the Killbuck Valley: A 12,000-Year Record of Prehistoric Utilization and Golden Ages and Dark Ages: The Impact of Millennial-Scale Climate Change on Human Cultures.

Minutes, April 27, 2015

President von Meerwall introduced our speaker, Dr. Nigel Brush, and his wife Anne, and Jeff St. Clair of WKSU who will be talking about his EXPLORADIO programs on Monday mornings. David Cavanaugh, a first-time visitor, was also introduced.

  Treasurer Dan Galehouse reported that everything seems to be in order. We will go from $274.45 to $254.45, less the cost of a glass of wine for one of our guests.

  Secretary Erdman Mentioned the June 1 meeting in this announcement, the final meeting of this academic year.

  President von Meerwall mentioned that Charles Lavan, our program chair, will not be able to continue in this role in the coming academic year. President von Meerwall will get with Dan Galehouse, Bob Erdman, and gather what info is available on future speakers from Charles Lavan, prior to our next meeting. [We since met, and Charles provided a working list for the year already!] A number of possible speakers are being considered, and we ask for everyone’s help in gathering more names as possible future speakers.

  Secretary Erdman introduced Jeff St. Clair, the first speaker of the evening:

  Jeff is an announcer for WKSU, who initiated the EXPLORADIO project. He has presented 141 programs on technology in Northeast Ohio to date, covering a wide variety of topics as seen below. Jeff previously worked as an Analytical Chemist.

  Some examples of programs cited by Jeff were the relationship between time spent on cell phones and grade-point averages, the complex swallowing process which can be a problem to seniors and premature babies, the impact of sports head injuries, steel making at Timken, re-growing spinal column tissue, differences in humor appreciation among different age groups, capture of methane from farms, the research of Charles Brush who founded many high-tech companies in Cleveland based on electric arcs and quartz crystals, energy from thorium done in Cleveland [the only group in the US working on this; it could ultimately provide a lower risk alternative to nuclear power], and microspinning technology at the University of Akron done by Dr. Reneker of our club.

  Some Cleveland Entrepreneurial efforts were also covered, such as Aaron LeMeioux of Tremont Electric who makes devices that generate electricity from motion such as walking or running, or wave action in Lake Erie. At University of Akron, Ali Dhinojwala led a project that analyzed the clinging mechanism used by the gecko and applied it to the development of carbon tape and other products. At the College of Wooster, Paul Edmiston invented Osorb glass, which absorbs the petroleum out of fracking water. Gerald Merini founded Teraphysics; they are using submillimeter wavelength technologies to build a tricorder-like device. Malcom Cooke and Ian Charnas rung Think[Box], a maker space at Case Western Reserve University; Malcolm puts on high-voltage shows. At NASA Glenn, they have many ion propulsion engines, some of which have been running for 46,000 hours.
Jeff is open to discussion of these or other technical advances in Northeast Ohio. Contact him at 330-672-9184 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  More information on Exploradio can be seen at www.WKSU.org/Exploradio or Facebook.com/exploradio.

  President von Meerwall introduced Dr. Brush, who is a Professor of Geology at Ashland University. He got degrees in anthropology, archaeology, and English Bible Studies from UCLA, Southampton in England, The Ohio State University and Cincinnati Bible college. He has taught courses in anthropology, archaeology, geology, and environmental studies at The Ohio State University, University of Akron, the Wayne Campus of the University of Akron, Kent State University, and the College of Wooster. He was written one book and is working on two more. He was curator at the Killbuck Museum of Natural History for over 10 years, and has conducted many archaeological excavations.

Notes on The Impact of Millennial-Scale Climate Change on Human Cultures

Presented by Dr. Nigel Brush, Professor of Geology, Ashland University


  Nature is full of recurring patterns. Studies of these patterns reveal past history and help predict the future. Cultures also have recurring patterns or growth to a “Golden Age” and decline to a “Dark Age.

  In the natural history of the earth, all land masses were once contiguous in a super-continent, in fact there were 7 super continents at different times, each of which broke up and reformed. There have been at least 6 occurrences of the oceans rising and covering the rims of continents [cratonic sequences]. Ice ages typically last 10-30 million years. Six have occurred in the last 2.9 billion years. We are presently only about 2.5 million years into an ice age, which have temperature variations within their lifetime. A relationship between these occurrences is that when tectonic plates collide, mountains are generated which decrease CO2 levels in the atmosphere. Volcanic eruptions cause the land masses to split apart and release CO2. There were also at least 5 major extinction events, some much worse than the most recent which is thought to be responsible for the demise of dinosaurs. One of the earlier events eliminated 95% of all species on earth.

  We also know that cultures have recurring patterns, as witnessed by the rise and fall of the Greek and Roman Empires, the Third Reich, etc. In North America, there were at least 4 leading cultures identified: The Watson Break Culture that collapsed about 2300BC, the Poverty Point Culture that collapsed around 1200BC, the Hopewell culture that collapsed around 400AD, and the Mississipian culture that collapsed around 1300AD. They all built mounds. When Europeans first landed here many theories were proposed assuming that mounds must have been built by Europeans. This has been disproved by recent studies, confirming that they were built by early North Americans.

  The cause of the decline of each of these cultures is not yet clear. Within the most recent, the Mississippian culture, many cultures existed, covering an area from just west of the Mississippi River to the east coast of what is today the United States. These included the Fort Ancient culture in Ohio. Some were large well-developed cultures. Some 20,000 people lived in Cahokia [say ‘ka-hoak-ee-ya’] at one time, making it one of the largest cities in the world around 1200AD. The largest mound in North America was there; it was 100 feet high and covered 13 acres. The Hopewell culture included Ohio; a four square mile city was located near Newark Ohio. The Poverty Point culture, centered in northern Louisiana was essentially a hunter-gatherer culture.

  Vere Gordon Childe [1892-1957] found that many European cultures collapsed in a similar time frame, particularly around the end of the early Bronze Age [2300BC] and the late Bronze Age [1200BC], the same time as the decline of the Watson Break and Poverty Point cultures in North America.

  There does seem to be consensus now that the single event that caused the extinction of dinosaurs and many other species was a large asteroid impacting the Yucatan peninsula. This could have heated the atmosphere to 500 degrees, caused tsunamis and severe floods, released large amounts of CO2 causing global warming, generated acid rain from emission of sulfur and nitrogen compounds, and created large amounts of dust and smoke reducing sunlight. Most other events, even those occurring worldwide have a variety of theories attempting to explain the event, and there is much discussion. Dr. Brush has developed a theory based on slight variation in solar output, with approximately a 1500-year cycle, that correlates well with natural and cultural major events over the last 4200years, and shows promise of correlations over the last 12,000 years. Even though the changes are small, they have significant impact in nature and on cultures. The theory is supported by recent observations of core samples from ocean floors not possible until recently. These identified changes in the concentration of isotopes of carbon and oxygen corresponding to the 1500-year cycles; these in turn can create changes in cloud cover. Historically, these correlate to periods of culture growth in warm periods and decline in colder periods. Tree ring, ice age and famine histories also correspond to these variations.

  In response to questions, Dr. Brush clarified that we are today in a warm period of an ice age. He also pointed out that the level of CO2 is higher than it has ever been, presumably due to human activity. He said that no correlation has been found between the earth’s magnetic field reversal and catastrophic events. We thanked the speaker with a round of applause.

Bob Erdman, Secretary 

 

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Akron Physics Club

Newsletter

Meeting Announcement: June 1, 2015 - TANGIER, 6:00 PM



Dr. Jay Reynolds, President Cleveland Astronomical Society, Department of Physics, Cleveland State University

will be speaking on:

DAWN Spacecraft: Rendezous with Asteroid CERES

In June 2013, Dr. Reynolds gave us a presentation on the DAWN Mission and what was learned from its visit to the asteroid VESTA. In 2012, it left VESTA and was on the way to the asteroid CERES at the time of his last presentation. It has now orbiting CERES. This presentation will be an update on the new things learned since the 2013 presentation.

 

Minutes, June 1, 2015

We had 32 reservations for this meeting, a record in recent years. Reid Parsons, who had visited a few times when he was in high school, is now a Physics Student at Ohio State University and joined us for this meeting. Sergei Lyuksyutov brought along his daughter Olga and another student. Robert Siladie could not join us for dinner, but was with us for the program. Speaker Jay Reynolds brought Suzie Dills of the Cleveland Astronomical Society.

  Treasurer Dan Galehouse reported that we started with $254.45; there were 27 paying members and a $20 anonymous donation, giving us an increase of $74; we had 5 guests for a decrease of $90, resulting in a net loss of $16. Thus the bank balance is $238.95, which agrees with the counted bank balance in the plastic case.

  Future Programs: In addition to the September 28 meeting planned as noted above, Dr. Lyuksyutov will be speaking in November. Dan Galehouse will work with others and publish a schedule once it fills in, in his new role as Program Chair [see below].

Executive Positions:

  The Program Chair position has been held very successfully for the last years by Charles Lavan, who no longer can continue in this role due to his medical situation and his travel schedule; he has agreed to give inputs to those who pick up this activity. We gave Charles a round of applause for his many years of excellent programs. Dan Galehouse has agreed to take the lead in program development and be Program Chair, with the understanding that he will need help from all of us in suggesting qualified speakers.

  The Treasurer position, held very competently by Dan Galehouse for many years will be filled by Dave Sours.

  After the regular meeting, Rick Nemer agreed to be the new Name Tag Marshall, a post vacated by Dave Sours, who has done a great job of keeping the name tags up to date, distributed and collected for each meeting.

  Ernst von Meerwall agreed to continue to be the Chair, Darrell Reneker agreed to continue as Vice Chair, Jonah Kirszenberg will continue as Webmaster, and Bob Erdman agreed to continue to be Secretary and ACESS Liaison.

  Those assembled unanimously approved these appointments. These officers will meet July 13 to plan the coming year.

  Chair von Meerwall then introduced Jay Reynolds, our speaker for this meeting:

  He is President of the Cleveland Astronomical Society. He makes many presentations each year and has been on local TV and radio stations many times. [See announcement of this meeting for more biographical information.]

Dr. Jay Reynolds Presentation:

  The Cassini spacecraft is planned to send pictures of Saturn’s rings as it goes through them. Then the orbit will then be flattened and it will crash into Saturn.

  The New Horizon spacecraft will have its closest approach to Pluto on July 14, 2015. It will fly by at 26,000 miles per hour. It took 9.5 years to get to Pluto. It will not land nor go into orbit. It is the fastest space ship launched from earth. It crossed the moon’s orbit 12 hours after liftoff. By comparison the Apollo ship took 60 hours. It will take 9 months to download the data from the fly-by, due to the distance from earth. After going near Pluto, it will go near an asteroid in the Kuiper belt, calculated from data from the Hubble Telescope.

  Charon is the largest of Pluto’s moons [by far]. Pluto takes 6 days to rotate once on it axis; Charon takes the same time to revolve around Pluto. This is a unique situation in the solar system. It and Pluto influence each other to the point where they spin around each other, and the center of gravity of the pair is outside the body of either.

See   http://wn.com/new_pluto,_charon_images_reveal_mysterious_features 

Some of the Pluto pictures show what appears to be an ice cap. Pluto has the greatest contrast of light vs. dark areas of any solar system object.

  The DAWN spacecraft has been to VESTA [Jay Reynolds talked about this visit in a previous talk to us], and is now going near CERES, the only spherical asteroid, and the largest known asteroid. VESTA is particularly interesting because one of every 20 meteorites hitting earth have the same composition as VESTA. There are also hundreds of very small asteroids with the same composition as VESTA [Vestoids]. Due to many starts and stops in the US program, the European Space Agency provided much of the equipment on the DAWN mission, including the Dutch solar panels which provide electricity for the ion engine using Xenon gas. The ion engines are very efficient, but provide low thrust, roughly equivalent to the weight of a piece of 8.5”x11” typing paper. The DAWN Mission has three ion engines; this allows for some corrosion to occur without destroying the propulsion system. It passed VESTA in 2011, and will arrive near CERES in 2016.

  VESTA is the brightest asteroid, and the second largest in mass [CERES is the largest]. It was predicted that VESTA had no moons. The DAWN Mission verified this. Once near VESTA, the DAWN spacecraft first went into a survey orbit, then a high-altitude mapping orbit, then a low-altitude orbit, with the highest resolution. A peak at the South Pole was observed [about twice the height of Mt. Everest], and many dark lines on the surface, which run roughly parallel to the equator. It is thought that the peak at the South Pole was the result of a large impact that nearly destroyed the asteroid. This was probably responsible for the dark lines near the equator. Gravitational field is about 2% of the earth’s gravity.

  Whereas Pluto is about one-half the US in diameter, VESTA is similar to the state of Ohio in diameter, and CERES is about the diameter of Texas. Some suspected plumes have been observed coming from CERES. It takes 4.6 years for it to revolve around the sun. There are numerous fairly bright spots on the surface, which are fairly bright. The origin and composition of these are not yet known. The most prominent theory is that that they are reflections from some form of reflective material. This could be ice, but that is not yet known. The brightest spot appears to be about 12 miles in diameter. There is no evidence of volcanic activity. Temperature on CERES varies from 130K to 230K.

  Fine control of steering on the DAWN spacecraft is done by hydrazine thrusters, which have a limited amount of fuel on board, or by the ion engines, which are slow, or by reaction wheels, which are 4 large mechanical moveable wheels, 2 of which are no longer useable.

  On June 6, 2015, the DAWN spacecraft will go into survey orbit around CERES for a few days, and then go into high- altitude orbit for a few months, then to the low-altitude orbit until sometime in 2016, and then it will spiral out to a stable orbit around CERES, where it will remain.

  In closing, it was pointed out that whenever we go to other planetary bodies, we learn more about earth, how unique it is, ho w it formed and how it compares to other bodies.

We thanked the speaker with a round of applause.

Bob Erdman, Secretary 

 

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Akron Physics Club

Newsletter

Meeting Announcement: MONDAY, September 28, 2015 - TANGIER, 6:00 PM



Dr. David Farrell, Case Western Reserve University, Department of Physics

will be speaking on:

Music Sweet and Sour

Abstract:
Although consonance and dissonance in music have attracted interest across several disciplines for over two millennia, we still have little understanding of the underlying phenomena involved. Given that the interplay between consonance and dissonance provides one of the principal means for communicating emotion in western music, this is an unsatisfactory situation. Accordingly, with guidance from musicians in the Cleveland Orchestra and the Cleveland Institute of Music, and in collaboration with Brooke Macnamara (department of psychological sciences, CWRU), I have launched a new theoretical effort in the area. In my talk, I will discuss the fascinating history of the problem, then use musical examples to explain the new physics-based approach that we are developing. I will conclude by discussing some of our new results and their musical implications.

The Speaker:
has been an Emeritus Professor at Case Western Reserve University since 2009, after being a Professor of Physics there for previous 18 years. He first came to Western Reserve University in 1964 as a Post Doctoral Fellow. He got his Ph.D. from Imperial College, University of London, after getting his B.Sc. First Class, with Honors in 1960 from the same institution. He also has a degree in piano from the Royal Academy of Music in England. The speaker has served as physics consultant to the Cleveland public school system, Argonne National Laboratory and Gould Inc. He also served as visiting professor at both Oxford and Cambridge Universities in England, as an Exchange Scientist at the Institute for Physical Problems in Moscow, and is a Fellow of the American Physical Society.

Minutes, September 28, 2015

We had 32 people in attendance for dinner, the same number as the highest attendance in recent years. Chair Ernst von Meerwall was not present. Darrell Reneker, Vice Chair led the meeting.

  Program Chair Dan Galehouse reported that the following programs have now been confirmed through January 2016:

  October: Traci Buckner discussing Akron STEM school programs.

  November: Prof. Lyuksyutov, University of Akron, will present "Peculiarities of scanning probe interactions with graphene fluoride and polymers at the nanoscale"

  January: John Nekki of NASA, who talked to us before, updating us on algae blooms in Lake Erie.

  Dan commented that the NASA Speakers Bureau knows us know, probably due to Charles Lavan’s work over the last few years.

  Dan is in discussions with Oleg Lorentovich from Kent Liquid Crystal Institute, Tom Gibbon who is involved with gravitational cosmology, Peter Thomas who is involved with neural transmission, Robert Owen who might talk about the LIGO the gravitational wave detector, and John Rhule who is an expert in microwave backgrounds. This is 5 people for the months of February March, April and May, 2016. He will continue to work with this list and any other suggestions members may have to finalize the program through May of 2016.

  In the past, in addition to outside speakers, we have had talks from regular members of the Club. Dan, Ernst von Meerwall and others have done this. Another possibility is to have two or three 15-minute talks. Let Dan know if you are interested. Dan welcomes more ideas and comments on presentations.

  We gave Dan a hand for his work in pulling together the program for the year.

  David Sours has replaced Dan as our Treasurer. He reported that the June balance was $258.45. We had 32 dinners tonight of which we paid for 5 of them. We had a $20 donation, and we paid our ACESS dues leaving a balance is $232.45.

  On October 11 David ran the Towpath Marathon in honor of Jack Gieck, our cofounder, who passed away a few months ago.

  Jonah Kirszenberg, our Webmaster indicated that the server we have been using is a very old server in the University of Akron Physics Department that is unreliable and outdated. We are now on a new server which can be accessed at akronphysicsclub.org.

  Secretary Erdman and Vice Chair Reneker introduced some visitors: Travis Beiera just graduated from Kent State University in Music. He and Erdman both attended a Music theory course a few years ago at Kent and Travis was interested in tonight’s program. Alvero Rodriguez is a Graduate Student in Chemical Engineering. Karla and Mark Schmiedlin are with the Cleveland Astronomy Club and glad to be visiting us. Joe and Diane Gorse are getting to be regulars and it is was good to see Charles Lavan at the meeting, who did such a fine job of putting together our programs for the last few years. Ian Abbot and Ed Goersky came to hear this talk.

  Bill Landis, an ACESS Advisor was introduced and reported on the latest ACESS [the Akron Council of Engineering and Scientific Societies] activities: This is an umbrella organization facilitating coordination among 15 technical societies in the area. Their annual banquet will be held November

  Secretary Erdman Mentioned the need for Science Fair Mentors on Saturday October 3 at Hudson High School for a mentoring day where students discuss science projects with professionals in their area. An email regarding this was sent after the meeting.

  Secretary Erdman introduced the speaker, Dr. David Farrell. He had some interesting issues with equipment made by Keithley Instruments, where Erdman was designing equipment. Dr. Farrell was educated in England, where he got degrees in music and Physics. He and Erdman worked together on technical issues in the 1960s, and David used to see Erdman in a jazz band that played in the Cleveland area. Then they did not see each for many years until last summer when they both were at a party in Cleveland. David indicated that he had been working on consonance and Dissonance and that led to his being here this evening to present this talk.

Notes on "MUSIC SWEET AND SOUR" by Prof. David Farrell:

  The phenomena of consonance and dissonance are fundamental structural components of western classical music. Professor Farrell began his discussion of these phenomena by Professor Farrell began his discussion of these phenomena by playing two chords on the piano, one consonant and the other dissonant. He then enumerated the large number of failed efforts to achieve a useful understanding of the phenomena, from Pythagoras of Samos, ~500 BC to Norman Cazden, 1914-1980. (The former enjoys widespread fame as a mathematician, while the latter is generally regarded as the most distinguished music theory scholar that the US has produced). He summarized his introduction by saying that, despite a huge effort, there is still no accepted scientific understanding of the origin of consonance and dissonance.

  He then described the interdisciplinary group that he has assembled in Cleveland to mount a fresh attack on the problem. It includes physicists from CWRU, musicians from the Cleveland Orchestra, music theorists and musicians from the Cleveland Institute of Music, a perceptual psychologist at CWRU, undergraduate students in psychology and physics, and a number of interested scholars from the wider intellectual community in Cleveland. The group’s theoretical approach is particularly novel, in that it takes its cue from four conspicuous failures in twentieth century theoretical physics, in the form of theories written by Einstein, Bohr, Heisenberg and Feynman. These were all “first-principle” attempts to explain the phenomena of superconductivity, and, despite the well-established abilities of their authors, were all complete failures. Professor Farrell argued that a ‘first-principles’ approach rarely works for complex phenomena like superconductivity, which are more productively attacked from the traditional ‘phenomenological’ viewpoint of solid-state physics. Even judged simply as physical phenomena, consonance and dissonance are vastly more complex than superconductivity, so are particularly good candidates for a phenomenological approach. The speaker then detailed some encouraging successes that his group has obtained using such an approach.

  For example, a musical ‘interval’ consists of two notes played simultaneously, say C and G, called ‘a fifth’ by musicians. In sharp contrast with traditional pedagogy, the Cleveland group has shown that the dissonance of a fifth with any specific tuning depends very strongly on the timbre of the instrument on which the interval is realized. In particular, for the organ it depends strongly on the pipe register, which is employed. Most importantly, Professor Farrell showed that phenomenological calculations of interval dissonance for different intervals on different registers of an organ are in good agreement with experiment – that is, with listening.

  Extending the group’s phenomenological approach to chords has produced fundamental new musical insights. Chords can be viewed as combinations of two or more intervals, and, like intervals, are either consonant or dissonant. Since medieval times, music theory has held that chord consonance demands precision pure tuning. In sharp contrast, the Cleveland group has demonstrated that such tuning leads to the majority of intervals in a chord beating at the same frequency, producing dissonance. Serious music employs a number of different strategies to quench these beats and achieve chord consonance.

  Interesting questions and exchanges followed the talk. For example, Professor Farrell pointed out that the interference of different notes that leads to ‘beats’ and dissonance is a physical effect, to the extent that it occurs in the air, not in our brains. This is demonstrated by the fact that if one note of an interval is applied to one ear, and the other note to the other ear, the interval that results is very much less dissonant than if the two notes are superimposed in the air before entering one (or both) ears. (The residual dissonance is due to interference between the waves that manage to propagate through the brain and skull). Operatic singers and expert soloists on string and wind instruments utilize vibrato and a variety of other strategies to produce more ‘consonant,’ or beautiful tones. This ability is presently beyond the reach of the group’s work, but could eventually be illuminated by it.

We thanked the speaker for an interesting presentation with a round of applause.

Bob Erdman, Secretary 

 

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Akron Physics Club

Newsletter

Meeting Announcement: MONDAY, October 26, 2015 - TANGIER, 6:00 PM



Traci Buchner, Akron Public Schools

will be speaking on:

Akron STEM Schools: A Collaborative Community


Abstract:
Buckner will share insight on how the STEM schools work towards answering the community's call to equip our youth with the college and work ready skills necessary to prepare them to transition into careers that will help our city thrive economically and allow us to compete globally. During her presentation you will learn how the students attain 21st century skills which lead to innovation and problem solving to make our community greater.

Bio:
Traci Buckner, Director of Specialty Programs for Akron Public Schools, has worked for more than 17 years in the Akron Public School system. After receiving her master's degree in education from John Carroll University, she served as a middle school language arts teacher, a dean of students, an assistant principal, and a principal before becoming the founding instructional leader of the National Inventors Hall of Fame School … Center for Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics Learning. Under Mrs. Buckner's leadership, the school distinguished itself as a national exemplar of STEM learning and was featured in Newsweek and on "Perry's Principles," a series that runs on CNN's Anderson Cooper 360°. Mrs. Buckner currently leads Akron Public Schools' efforts to expand STEM best practices throughout the district and to develop and direct innovation efforts in the district's nontraditional schools. She also serves as a founding faculty member of Battelle's Innovative Leaders Institute and was recently honored at the Ohio Black Women's Leadership Caucus's 34th annual Salute to Black Women & Scholarship, with the theme "Women of Science, Technology, Engineering and Math Rising Amongst the Stars." She lives with her husband, Tobin, and their two sons.

Minutes, October 26,2015

Chair von Meerwall opened by appreciating the fact that this is the end of a long day for our speaker: This is her 4th meeting of the day, and she agreed to speak to us, even though she knew there would not be time for dinner.

  David Sours gave the Treasurer’s Report: He reported that the September balance was $232.45. An email with final accounting info sent after the meeting showed we took in $400, including a donation of $20, and paid out $360 to the Tangier for dinners, leaving a balance of $272.45.

  He reported that when he ran the Towpath Marathon on October 11, he wore a shirt honoring Jack Gieck, our cofounder, who passed away a few months ago. The shirt said “Jack Gieck, canal Historian”. Many people commented on the shirt and shared appreciations of Jack’s work as a towpath and canal expert. It was great to meet so many people who enjoyed Jack’s work. He spoke to people at the Cascade Locks Association; they are considering setting up a Gieck memorial of some kind. Dave will keep us informed.

  Program Chair Dan Galehouse reported that the next meeting after the November meeting will be January 25, 2016. John Lekki of NASA will be updating us on the algae bloom in Lake Erie, which he discussed with us a few years ago.

  Dan has four candidate speakers for the months of February through May, 2016, covering topics in the areas of liquid crystals, gravitational cosmology, neural transmission, and perhaps the LIGO gravitational wave detector. He will contact these potential speakers yet this year, and report the results by the January meeting. Dan is willing to prepare a talk for May on how quantum mechanics can be deterministic if we are interested, and asked that people contact him at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to comment on their interest [or lack thereof] in this topic and the other areas mentioned. Also Jay Reynolds may be able talk to us about some of the new data from Pluto in the spring of 2016. So we have many possibilities. Dan is looking for ideas and comments on these proposals so he can finalize many of the programs for 2016, hopefully this month.

  Secretary Erdman introduced Brett Sisler, the new Treasurer of ACESS, who is on the ACESS [Akron Council of Engineering and Scientific Societies] Banquet Committee. He described purposes of ACESS and the banquet at which outstanding STEM students were honored on Nov. 5.

  Lloyd Goettler from ACESS was introduced. He is leading a new group trying to bring academia in closer relationship to industry in the Akron area, working with the 15 local technical member societies of ACESS in the Akron area, including our Physics Club, University of Akron, Kent State, and perhaps Stark State. Bill Landis who was here last month, is with us again. He is also in the group working with Lloyd on this.

  Chair von Meerwall introduced the speaker, Tracy Buckner: She has been with the Akron Public School system for over 17 years, and is the founding instructional leader of the National Inventor’s Hall of Fame School…Center for Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics [STEM] learning. This institution has gained national attention in the press and on Television. More detail is available in the announcement of this October meeting.

Notes on “STEM in Akron Public Schools”

by Tracy Buckner:

  The school was opened in 2009, beginning instruction in STEM fields in the 5th grade. This coming spring the first class will be graduating seniors. There is an emphasis on both individual learning and group learning in pods, even with people whom you may not like. There is an emphasis on developing the entrepreneurial mind set. Ms. Buckner works with 13 Akron Public Schools, including 7 which have a STEM focus, to spread the STEM ideas throughout the public school system. Various schools have specific plans to increase STEM accreditation, including the planned North High School plan to focus on all phases of health care education. These specialty programs impact 27% of the student population. The Hall of Fame School is a lottery school, for students are selected at random.

  At STEM focus schools, there are after school extended learning opportunities, in areas such as soap box derby cars, robots, cyber security, and on site outdoor activities in the spring in collaboration with Stan Hywet Hall and Gardens. Collaboration with Summa, which is near to North High School, develops leadership through internships at the Summa facility.

  Arts space is being added to the National Inventors Hall of Fame activities, and a student and a parent are going to Washington DC with a teacher on a grant to explore ways of incorporating arts into STEM activities. This is one of 8 schools in the country to be awarded such a grant.

  Goodyear is collaborating with the schools by placing present and retired expert employees in programs that teach STEM activities and work with students in the extended learning programs. They also offer internships in the IT department.

  Akron is a hub on the Ohio STEM alliance. As such, they share programs and activity outlines with schools in 13 neighboring counties. These programs tend to instantly assess learning quality and modify the methods used in order to improve the learning process.

  Questions included the use of maker’s space: There is one in the old Inventure Place in downtown Akron, where students develop their own projects. This includes bringing in inventors, such as the inventor of post-it notes. There is also one in the Akron public library, and Synhack is nearby. There is also a maker space at Hudson High School.

  Problem-based learning integrates many STEM areas to address a specific problem, including arts and humanities. An example is working with the park system to minimize the negative impact of invasive species. Students receive instruction in presenting themselves and their projects effectively. They reach out to others schools, such as Aurora and Hudson to use programs that they have used successfully.

  Regarding an assessment of the quality of these programs, they work with an outside firm to determine whether 21st century skills are being effectively taught. Emphasis is on quality of teaching of 21st century skills rather teaching to the test. They test for understanding of the science involved. There is no direct tie to assessments of international status compared to schools in other countries, but clearly the recent emphasis on STEM education in the US is improving our position in the world.

  They have done career interest tests to determine appropriate intern positions in local industry. They have special programs to attract female students. They have an open house with special sessions for girls.

  There is an issue related to accreditation in that experienced people in the workplace cannot easily teach in any capacity in the school system without accreditation. This is a problem in getting experience into the teaching staff. Some ways suggested were after-school programs, robotics and other clubs, and science fair programs. This can augment classroom instruction and still use the experienced person’s skills to improve student’s understanding without requiring state certification.

We thanked the speaker with applause.

Bob Erdman, Secretary 

 

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Akron Physics Club

Newsletter

Meeting Announcement: MONDAY, November 23, 2015 - TANGIER, 6:00 PM



Dr. Sergei Lyuksyutov, The University of Akron, Professor of Physics and Chemistry

will be speaking on:

Graphene fluoride functionalization using high electrostatic fields generated by atomic force microscope tips: Comparison with funtionalization of polymers


Abstract:
Graphene is two-dimensional sheet of graphite with hexagonal lattice at least 200 times stronger than steel, conducting electricity, heat and transparent. Because of zero bandgap of graphene, it should be functionalized for nano-electronics. Graphene fluoride (CF)n is fluorocarbon derivate of graphene with each carbon atom bound to fluorine. In this work we report novel and easily accessible method to chemically reduce graphene fluoride (GF) sheets with nanoscopic precision using AFM-assisted electrostatic nanolithography. Reduction of fluorine by the electric field produces graphene nanoribbons (GNR) with a width of 105-1800 nm with sheet resistivity drastically decreased from >1 TΩ (GF) down to 46 kW/ (GNR). The electrostatic field required to remove fluorine from carbon is ~1.6 V/nm. Reduction of the fluorine may be due to the softening of the C–F bond in this intense field or to the accumulation and hydrolysis of adventitious water into a meniscus. These results are compared with nanoscopic functionalization of polystyrene and polymethyl methacrylate.

Bio:
Sergei Lyuksyutov has earned his degrees from Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology: MS in Physics and Engineering in 1984, and Ph.D in Physics in 1991. His dissertation title was “Hybrid lasers based on photorefractive materials”. He was awarded George Soros Fellowship at Oxford University, Hertford College, UK (1989-1990). He also served as a Visiting Professor at the Technical University of Denmark (2001), National Research Council Summer Faculty Fellow at USAF Laboratory at Wright-Patterson AFB (2002-2004), Japan Society Promotion for Science Fellow at Institute of Technology in Tokyo, Japan (2004-2005), Fulbright Senior Specialist at the Institute of Physics, Kiev, Ukraine (2008), NASA Summer Faculty Fellow at Glenn Research Center (2010-2011), Senior Fellow at Naval Research Laboratory, Washington DC (2012-2013), and as Glenn Fellow at NASA in 2014. He has published more than 50 papers in peered-reviewed journals, and delivered more 100+ contributed and invited talks at International (France, Germany, Denmark, Japan, Poland, Check Republic, Ukraine, and Russia) and National conferences. Sergei is a member of American Physical and Chemical societies, and also SPIE. His research interests are in the areas of Atomic force microscopy, and experimental Nonlinear Optics.

Minutes, November 23, 2015

  Chair von Meerwall opened the meeting recognizing Jonah Kirszenberg, our webmaster. He also recognized Ben Galehouse from Switzerland, son of Dan Galehouse and our speaker, Sergei Luksyutov with his wife Olga, and some graduate students who attended the presentation.

  Dan Galehouse is working on speakers for meetings beyond the January meeting. Ideas are welcome. More information will be available in January.

  David Sours gave the Treasurer’s Report: He reported that the October balance was $272.45. An email with final accounting info sent after the meeting showed we took in $400, and paid for 24 dinners, leaving a balance of $250.45.

  He reported that he had opening discussions concerning a memorial garden honoring Jack Gieck, our cofounder, who passed away a few months ago, along with other leaders. David spoke with Don Gordon of the Cascade Locks Association. They both realized that many people appreciated Jack’s work. Plans are being put into place to open such a garden within a year. There may be a place for some form of small memorial to Jack on behalf of the Physics Club if we are interested.

  Jonah Kirszenberg, Webmaster, reported that many write-ups in the archives are done by Jack Gieck. We have had visitors on the website from all over the world; many from Europe, and some from Asia. He is moving the website to new more reliable server at akronphysicsclub.org in January 2016. We thanked Jonah for his efforts.

  Chair von Meerwall introduced our speaker, Dr. Sergei Lyuksyutov: Chair von Meerwall referred to the bio in the announcement for this meeting. After getting his graduate degrees at the Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology and at Oxford, he came to University of Akron 8 years ago. His interests are now focused on Graphene.

Notes on “Graphene Fluoride Functionalization using High Electrostatic Fields Generated by Atomic Force Microscope tips: Comparison with functionalization of polymers and Silicon”

By Sergei Lyuksyutov:

  The Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology [MIPT] is a public institution, proposed in 1946 by Nobel Prize Winner Pyotr Kapitsa. It is one of the leading physics institutions in the world, with 4 other Nobel Prize winners on the faculty: Nikolay Semyonov, Lev Landau, Alexandr Prokhorov, and Vitaly Ginzburg. Also in 2010 Andre Geim [who lived in the same dorm as our speaker] and Konstantin Novoselov were awarded Nobel prizes for “Groundbreaking Experiments Regarding the Two-dimensional Material Graphene”.

  Dr. Lyuksyutov uses Atomic Force Microscopy [AFM] for his work. In an AFM, there is a sharp tip mounted on a cantilever above the surface of the material being tested. The tip is deflected electrostatically by surface charge in the material being tested. A laser beam is focused on the cantilever, and projected onto a highly sensitive photodetector. This laser system provides a gain in deflection of 300 to 1000, thus a 0.01nm deflection appears as a 3-10nm deflection in the laser beam which is easily detected. In the constant force mode, the tip never touches the surface.

  IBM Zurich published an article in 1999 about a high-density memory made by indenting a polymer. Dr. Lyuksyutov collaborated with a Wright-Patterson Air Force team first measure the surface charge at each indentation and ultimately to build polymer structures at the nm level by using charge polarization and by dragging the tip on the surface creating triboelectric forces. They then applied these techniques to the forming of silicon and silicon dioxide structures.

  Graphene is a 2-dimensional atomic scale carbon hexagonal mesh in which each atom is a vertex [think of a 2-dimensional floor made of hexagonal tiles]. It can be made by putting a piece of tape on a graphite surface, which adheres to the top layer of the graphite. This tape can then be applied to a layer of silicon dioxide which leaves the graphene on the surface of the silicon dioxide. Silicon dioxide on a silicon substrate is a very inexpensive material because of the high volume use in fabricating microelectronics.

  Graphene fluoride is a derivative of graphene, a two-dimensional sheet of hybridized carbons with each carbon atom bound to one fluorine atom. It is similar to Teflon. The carbon-fluorine polar covalent bond is the second strongest in organic chemistry, and it is very short, about 0.137nm. Dr. Lyuksyutov’s work showed that using a gold tip, graphene fluoride can be reduced to graphene ribbons with controlled resistivity varying from over 1 teraohm per square down to 46 kilo-ohms per square. They are exploring two possible reduction mechanisms: Electric field desorption and water dissociation due to electrolysis. It is unclear at this time which is the primary mechanism.

  We thanked the speaker with applause.

FROM THE ASTRONOMY CLUB OF AKRON:

A total Solar Eclipse is coming your way..........August 21, 2017. Have you made your plans for this once in a lifetime experience? Even though it's over a year away this rare American celestial event will sweep the nation from Pacific to Atlantic. (Nearly everyone in the contiguous U.S.A. can reach this total solar eclipse within one day's drive.)

It's for everyone, not just astronomers!

On Friday, January 22, 2016, Jodi McCullough, President of the MVAS and eclipse-chaser will present "Chasing Eclipses: Getting Ready for 2017." Jodi and other MVAS members will share their recent total solar eclipse experience in Svalbard Norway, March 20, 2015. She will also give us pointers on how best to prepare for nature's phenomena in 2017.

Meeting Location: Portage Lakes Kiwanis Civic Center, 725 Portage Lakes Drive, Akron 44319, 8:00 p.m. No reservations required with plenty of free parking.

SCIENCE FAIRS NEED JUDGES: Government, academic and industrial Scientists and college students:

NEOHSTEM Fair at Kent State University Ballroom: We need project judges, if you are technical, scientific, or can judge behavioral science projects, please join us on January 22 and/ or January 23 as a judge. For more information, times, and to sign up go: http://www.signupgenius.com/go/30e0e4fa5ab2fa1f49-stem

AKRON NORTH HIGH SCHOOL, JANUARY 30: We are anticipating 500 projects done by 5th graders through 12th graders. Judges are to be at North High School on Jan 30th around 7:30, and will be leaving after lunch around 1 or 1:30. Information about the fair, including the registration form can be found at:

http://akronschools.com/index.php?do=/science-expo

On Wed, Jan 13, 2016 at 3:54 PM, Bob Erdman <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.; wrote:

The announcement for the January meeting, and notes from the November meeting are below.

Hope to see you there.

Bob Erdman, Secretary, Akron physics Club