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NCCU Joins Nuclear Research Consortium

The provosts and leaders of the Triangle Universities Laboratory consortium universities (left to right), N.C. State Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost Warwick Arden; UNC Chapel-Hill Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost Robert A. Blouin; Triangle Universities Nuclear Laboratory Director Arthur Champagne; Duke Provost Sally Kornbluth; NCCU Mathematics and Physics Associate Professor, Mohammed Ahmed; NCCU Interim Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs Carlton E. Wilson

North Carolina Central University (NCCU) has joined the Triangle Universities Nuclear Laboratory (TUNL), a nuclear physics research consortium housed at Duke University.

NCCU faculty and students have conducted research at the TUNL facility for more than two decades. In the agreement signed Jan. 29, 2018, NCCU officially joined the consortium, which also involves research faculty and students from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, N.C. State University and Duke. The site is one of only four U.S. Department of Energy Centers of Excellence in nuclear physics.

“We are truly excited to join this intellectually rich consortium, which has advanced the nuclear physics frontier and prepared students and young scientists to work in the field – from serving as science advisors to United States presidents to leading global research – for more than 50 years,” said Carlton Wilson, Ph.D., interim provost and vice chancellor for academic affairs.

As a historically black college or university (HBCU), NCCU’s participation in TUNL is expected to add diversity to the field, said physics Professor Mohammed Ahmed.

“Bringing NCCU into the consortium will provide us an infrastructure through which minorities, especially women and African-Americans, can work alongside masters of the field in nuclear physics,” Ahmed said.

Ahmed and his colleagues have conducted research at TUNL for more than two decades under an informal agreement. Becoming part of the consortium will provide the university with greater presence and access to the TUNL facilities and enhance the incentive for students to study physics at NCCU.

Senior Eagle Abasi Brown of Raleigh said he was impressed when he learned of the resources NCCU offers to physics students through the TUNL program. While still an undergraduate, he has been able to conduct nuclear physics research by analyzing muons, an element in cosmic radiation.                                                                                                                                                                                        

“Having the opportunity to work at a high level nuclear laboratory like TUNL is a big advantage in applying to graduate school,” said Brown, who plans to continue the study of nuclear physics after graduating in May. “And it’s a great thing to put on a job resume, as well.”

Published: Thursday, February 08, 2018
by Senior Writer and Editor, Renee Elder
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