Student Takes Second Place at Physics Research Symposium

Students presented research at the physics symposium
From left, Tao (Paul) Jin '19, Minzhao (Henryken) Liu ’21, Professor Narendra Jaggi, Nicholas Milcik ’20 and David “Nico” Lopez ’21 attended the Illinois Section of American Association of Physics Teachers (ISAAPT)’s Student Research Symposium.

April 11, 2019

BLOOMINGTON, Ill. — Four Illinois Wesleyan University physics students presented their research at the Illinois Section of American Association of Physics Teachers (ISAAPT)’s Student Research Symposium, held on April 5-6 at the College of DuPage.

Mathematics and physics double major Tao (Paul) Jin ’19, computer science and physics double major David “Nico” Lopez ’21, mathematics and physics double major Minzhao (Henryken) Liu ’21 and Hispanic studies and physics double major Nicholas Milcik ’20 attended the symposium with Professor of Physics Narendra Jaggi.

Out of 16 papers from students across Illinois, Liu’s paper, “A Computational Approach to the Analysis of Magnetoresistance Signatures of Magnetic Nano-Structures: Armchair and Brickwork Artificial Spin Ice,” was awarded second place. Research was judged on methodology and originality, as well as oral and visual presentation.

The student research examined computational condensed matter physics, magnetoresistance in Artificial Spin Ice structures, and mathematical models of telomere shortening in cells.

Henryken Liu
Minzhao (Henryken) Liu ’21

“It is extremely rewarding in a professional, and also in a personal sense, for me to watch them grow in confidence and to recognize how much they have matured as  scientists during the process of conducting research on a state-of-the-art project,” Jaggi said. “It seems likely that these papers will end up getting submitted for publication in professional scientific journals during the coming summer. If that does happen, it would constitute an extraordinary achievement for them.”

One of the students, Henryken Liu, and Professor Jaggi are currently collaborating with scientists at the Illinois Materials Research Science and Engineering Center to try to explain the origin of a newly discovered type of magnetoresistance behavior in Topological Insulator based structures, which can lead to useful electronic devices.

By Rachel McCarthy ’21