Facilities

Kreger Hall

The Department of Physics moved from Culler Hall — home to the department since Culler was built in 1961 — to Kreger Hall in 2014. Physics settled in Kreger and enjoys the newly renovated facility with state-of-the-art laboratory spaces, contemporary classrooms, and advanced teaching labs.

Kreger Hall renovations included new instructional and research laboratories, up to date departmental offices and classrooms; modernized mechanical, electrical, data and fire-suppression systems; addition of accessible restrooms; a revamped elevator; and enhancements to the exterior.

The project was supported with state capital funds. A small amount of local reserves were used in the design phase.

History of Kreger Hall

Kreger Hall was the only academic building constructed with state appropriations on Miami's campus in the 1930's. The central portion of the building was completed in 1931 for use as a chemistry building. The east wing was finished in 1937 and the west wing in 1939.

The building was originally named Hughes Hall after Raymond M. Hughes, professor of chemistry 1898-1911 and university president 1911-1927.

In 1968, the building was renamed in honor of Clarence W. Kreger, a professor of chemistry who developed many of the technical programs that led to the creation of the School of Applied Science.

Most recently, Kreger housed the School of Engineering and Applied Science (now College of Engineering and Computing) until their move in 2006 to the present day engineering building and reconstructed Benton Hall.

SCALE-UP

Since the Department of Physics moved to Kreger Hall, instructors are teaching introductory physics courses in an active, student-centered learning mode known as SCALE-UP (Student Centered Activities for Large Enrollment Undergraduate Programs). This approach of teaching combines traditional lecture and lab classes, while students perform hands-on activities and problem solving under the guidance of a professor supported by teaching assistants. Each group has a computer and work can be projected from any station in the room to one of several white boards. The students work collaboratively on laboratory projects, computer modeling and paper-and-pencil problem solving. The activities are interspersed with short lectures.

Research Laboratories

Astrophysics

Facility details coming soon

Theoretical: Dr. Steve Alexander

Atomic, Molecular and Optical Physics

Dr. Bali's research occupies 1100 square feet of laboratory space equipped with four optics tables, several home-built and commercial external cavity-tunable diode laser systems, two home-built laser amplifier systems, a sensitive imaging system built in-house for taking precisely timed millisecond exposures, several acousto-optic modulator systems, Faraday isolators, single-mode fiber-optics, a spatial light modulator system,, an ultrahigh vacuum system comprising a 26-window steel vacuum cell with anti-reflection coated windows, a triple mumetal layer magnetically shielded enclosure, in addition to optics, detection equipment, and computers necessary for conducting experimental research in cold atoms and information storage in coherently prepared warm alkali vapor.

Experimental: Dr. Samir Bali

Facility details coming soon

Experimental: Dr. Burçin Bayram

Facility details coming soon

Experimental: Dr. E. Carlo Samson

Biophysics and Soft Condensed Matter Physics

The Cell Biophysics laboratory consists of three connected rooms. The optics room houses an optical table with vibration isolation, inverted fluorescence microscope, a sub-nanosecond pulsed UV laser, and a nanosecond gated intensified detector with spectrograph. Additionally, we have constructed a high-pressure flow system for the real time spectral monitoring of biological samples pressurized to deep-sea pressures (100's of atms). A second room houses wet facilities equipped with a fume hood, biosafety hood, deionized and ultra-pure water sources, refrigerator/freezer, pH meter, analytic balance, and zoom stereoscope. Finally, there is a computer room with several PC workstations for data analysis and visualization.

Experimental: Dr. Paul Urayama

Dr. Vishwanath runs the optical spectroscopy and imaging methods (OSIM) lab. Our pursuit is to understand light propagation in complex media such as biological tissues and exploit this understanding for non-invasive sensing of morphological and function information in living tissues using optical approaches. Research interests span theoretical, computational and experimental approaches of diffuse optical spectroscopy and imaging. Specifically, we develop both static techniques (to measure tissue contrast as intrinsic absorption, scattering and fluorescence) as well dynamic light scattering and correlation spectroscopy techniques (to measure tissue contrast using flow-velocimetry). Our work is highly interdisciplinary and deeply collaborative with active projects spanning departments within and outside of Miami.

The OSIM lab has two lab-spaces. The first is a 900 sq. ft. room containing the majority of resources for  optical development while a second smaller room (100 sq. ft.) for wet chemistry and basic stoichiometry. The main lab has 3 optical tables with vibration isolation with standard optical hardware, several different lasers (CW and picosecond pulsed systems), LEDs and halogen lamp sources, cooled spectrometers, time-correlated single photon counters, single photon avalanche diodes (gated and ungated), fiber optic cables, and multi-channel correlators. The main lab has several desktop, laptop and micro PCs (Raspberry Pis). The wet-room contains a chemical fume-hood, refrigerator and a shared low-pressure electric furnace.

Experimental and Theoretical/Computational: Dr. Karthik Vishwanath

Computational Physics

The research at the Mirza Quantum Information Group is of theoretical nature with typically 50% analytical work and 50% numerics. We develop theoretical quantum optical models with direct applications in the field of quantum computation, quantum communication and quantum metrology. To help perform numerical work, Mirza Quantum Information Theory Lab is equipped with up-to-date computation facilities for students with capabilities of performing efficient numerical simulations using computer programming languages such as MATLAB, Pythin, Mathematica and others. For advanced computational tasks that require high performance computational resources (for example for large scale parallel computing tasks) we work closely with Redhawk Cluster within the Miami University and Ohio Supercomputer as the state-level computational resource.

Theoretical: Dr. Imran Mirza

Condensed Matter Physics

Facility details coming soon

  • Ceramic materials

Experimental: Dr. Herbert Jaeger

Facility details coming soon

  • Magnetic materials

Experimental: Dr. Khalid Eid

Facility details coming soon

Experimental: Dr. Mahmud Khan

Physics Education

The physics education group has a lab space that is divided into several different rooms. We have a conference room, with a hexagonal table and six chairs - and an observation room with a one-way mirror, looking into the conference room. The observation room also has storage with a sink and a mini-fridge! There is also a large room with several student desks, well-stocked with office supplies and large windows overlooking a patio outside the student center. Finally, we have a library of reference books and a spacious storage closet.

Dr. Jennifer Blue

Quantum Optics & Quantum Information

The research at the Mirza Quantum Information Group is of theoretical nature with typically 50% analytical work and 50% numerics. We develop theoretical quantum optical models with direct applications in the field of quantum computation, quantum communication and quantum metrology. To help perform numerical work, Mirza Quantum Information Theory Lab is equipped with up-to-date computation facilities for students with capabilities of performing efficient numerical simulations using computer programming languages such as MATLAB, Pythin, Mathematica and others. For advanced computational tasks that require high performance computational resources (for example for large scale parallel computing tasks) we work closely with Redhawk Cluster within the Miami University and Ohio Supercomputer as the state-level computational resource.

Theoretical: Dr. Imran Mirza

Dr. Bali's research occupies 1100 square feet of laboratory space equipped with four optics tables, several home-built and commercial external cavity-tunable diode laser systems, two home-built laser amplifier systems, a sensitive imaging system built in-house for taking precisely timed millisecond exposures, several acousto-optic modulator systems, Faraday isolators, single-mode fiber-optics, a spatial light modulator system,, an ultrahigh vacuum system comprising a 26-window steel vacuum cell with anti-reflection coated windows, a triple mumetal layer magnetically shielded enclosure, in addition to optics, detection equipment, and computers necessary for conducting experimental research in cold atoms and information storage in coherently prepared warm alkali vapor.

Experimental: Dr. Samir Bali

Facility details coming soon

Experimental: Dr. E. Carlo Samson

Foucault Pendulum

Major funding for the remodel of Kreger Hall came from the state of Ohio, committing to use 1% of the total appropriation for art. Following a national call, 23 artists submitted their visions and three finalists presented their designs to a selection committee. The department art display is a Foucault pendulum — suitable for the redeveloped space in Kreger Hall — demonstrating simple, direct evidence of Earth’s rotation.

The winning depiction for the pendulum combines the forces of the universe with a sense of regularity; a keeper of time. The fixed point is an illuminated glass cone etched with images from the Hubble space telescope. At the end of the mass rod is a bob of brass weighing 230 pounds. At the end of the bob are three tiers of lit up and etched glass, each representing different and equally important ideas to physicists.

The first layer you see is an astronomical clock reporting the time, date, and season based on a 365-day cycle. The middle layer is a map of Oxford from the 1800s with a square silhouette tracing the location of Miami University. The bottom layer depicts the constellation figures of the Northern Hemisphere. The base of the pendulum is a traditional compass rose, appropriately positioned by its location in the building and embedded in the floor with three colors of water-jet cut granite.

The Foucault Pendulum is on the second floor of Kreger Hall, adjacent to a study area and across the hall from the physics office.

Floor Maps

1st Floor (basement level entry)

Research Specialties, Level 100

Bose-Einstein Condensates Lab, room 138

Biological Physics, rooms 121 and 125

Condensed Matter & Nanoscience, rooms 126, 129, 133

Flex Lab, room 117, used for collaboration

Optical Spectroscopy and Quantum Optics, rooms 115, 128


2nd Floor (ground level entry)

Research Specialties, Level 200

Physics Education Research, room 228

Quantum Information and Quantum Computing, room 232

Theoretical Astrophysics, room 203

The Starkey Family Room made possible by a generous contribution from Russ Starkey ‘64


3rd Floor (stair entry only)

SCALE UP (Student Centered Activities for Large Enrollment Undergraduate Programs), Level 300

Physics Introductory courses integrate lab and lecture into a studio environment. Students work collaboratively on laboratory activities, computer modeling, and paper-and-pencil problem solving. These activities are interspersed with short lectures.

DIL (Director of Instructional Labs) Mark Fisher ’80

The DIL is instrumental to student success. He manages, assists with, and builds lab experiments and teaching demonstrations for the department.

The Edwards Seminar Room, named in honor of Ray L. Edwards, made possible by a donation from the Carl A. ’28 & Harriet Frische.