Dr. L. Adriana Banu, an experimental nuclear physicist, received her Ph.D. in 2005 from University of Mainz, Germany, on research work on the structure of exotic nuclei at GSI Darmstadt. Soon after that, she moved to the USA as a postdoctoral research associate at the Cyclotron Institute/Texas A&M University, where she carried out research in nuclear physics for astrophysics using rare isotope beams. Prof. Banu joined the Department of Physics and Astronomy at JMU in fall of 2010. Her current research interests are the nuclear processes that occur in stars and stellar explosions of astrophysical relevance for the nucleosynthesis of chemical elements; she investigates them using both stable and radioactive nuclear beams. At the Madison Accelerator Laboratory (MAL), a recently developed facility at JMU, she is focused on implementing a nuclear astrophysics research project based on the photoactivation technique to study the so-called p-nuclei.

Dr. Kevin Giovanetti received his Ph.D. from the College of William and Mary (1982). As a postdoctoral researcher at PSI, Dr. Giovanetti continued his exploration of fundamental physics using atoms composed of exotic particles. This was followed by a second postdoctoral position at UVA where Dr. Giovanetti learned the electron scattering techniques that he currently uses to explore the properties of protons and neutrons at Jefferson lab. Dr. Giovanetti came to JMU in 1989. He strove to merge a productive research program in low energy particle physics with undergraduate education. Recent highlights include his involvement in CLAS at Jefferson lab, G-2 at Fermi lab, and Mulan at PSI.

Dr. Ilarion Melnikov studied at Cornell University as an undergraduate and received his Ph.D. in Physics from Duke University. He is a mathematical physicist with main interests in quantum field theory and string theory. The former is a broad framework underlying our understanding of particle physics and a wide variety of many-body phenomena and collective behavior. The latter is an ambitious attempt to describe the fundamental structure of matter and space-time itself. Dr. Melnikov's work uncovers and develops geometric and algebraic structures in quantum field theory and string theory; these structures can often constrain or even exactly determine various physical properties of these systems. Conversely, the physical origins of the mathematical structures can often lead to surprising mathematical insights and unexpected relations.

Dr. Gabriel Niculescu received his Ph.D. from Hampton University. He then moved on to a postdoc position at Jefferson Lab (by way of Ohio University) and then at the University of Virginia. He came to JMU in 2003. Dr. Niculescu is a member of the CLAS collaboration at Jefferson Lab and the Minerva neutrino experiment at Fermi Lab. He is involved in all aspects of designing, simulating, building, and testing detectors for these high energy experiments, as well as analyzing the data.

Dr. Ioana Niculescu received her Ph.D. from Hampton University. She went on to hold a postdoctoral position at Jefferson Lab. Dr. Niculescu joined the faculty of JMU in 2002. She is a member of the CLAS collaboration of Jefferson Lab and also the Minerva neutrino experiment at Fermi Lab. Dr. Niculescu studies quark-hadron duality, that is, being able to describe hadronic processes in terms of quarks and gluons or also in terms of hadrons.

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