24-Feb-13 11:30 PM  EST

National Society of Black Physicists (NSBP) sponsors the Carl Albert Rouse Undergraduate Research Fellowship for research with LIGO Laboratory.

About Carl A. Rouse

Carl A RouseIn 1956 Carl A. Rouse became the first African American to earn a Ph.D. from the California Institute of Technology.  Dr. Rouse's thesis research was in the field of particle physics. He then went on to  become the first African American to successfully enter into a career as a professional astrophysics researcher.

After graduate school he took a position as a scientist at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory where he studied screened Coulomb interactions utilizing quantum mechanics.  Through this work he studied ionization states of atoms at very high densities, and he advanced the fronteirs of knowledge in atomic physics, plasma physics and very much in computational physics.  One particular application of his work was on the internal structure of the Sun.  Dr. Rouse created detailed models of the solar interior and was the first person to solve the Saha Equation for the solar interior.  He was especially prolific in solar physics, proposing novel and provactive ideas, in the realm of the so-called 'neutrino problem'.  In addition to the structure of the Sun, his ideas raised interesting questions about the fundamental nature of nuclear fusion.  The breath of implicatons along with his intellectual curiosity and tenancity are enduring legacies of his work.

For more information read an article of the American Astronomical Society published in the 2006 Spectrum Newsletter (H. Oluseyi, "Contributions from the first half-century of African-American solar astronomers", pp 1-3 and 14-16) of the Committee on the Status of Minorities in Astronomy.

About LIGO

LIGO, which stands for the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory, is a large-scale physics experiment aiming to directly detect gravitational waves.  LIGO's mission is to directly observe gravitational waves of cosmic origin. These waves were first predicted by Einstein's general theory of relativity in 1916, when the technology necessary for their detection did not yet exist. Gravitational waves were indirectly suggested to exist when observations were made of the binary pulsar PSR 1913+16, for which the Nobel Prize was awarded to Hulse and Taylor in 1993.
Direct detection of gravitational waves has long been sought. Their discovery would launch a new branch of astronomy. The international LIGO Scientific Collaboration (LSC) is a growing group of researchers, over 800 individuals at roughly 50 institutions, working to analyze the data from LIGO and other detectors, and working toward more sensitive future detectors.
LIGO operates two gravitational wave observatories in unison: the LIGO Livingston Observatory  in Livingston, Louisiana, and the LIGO Hanford Observatory, on the DOE Hanford Site located near Richland, Washington.
The Carl Albert Rouse Fellowship is tenable for summer undergraduate research opportunities in LIGO at Caltech, Hanford Observatory site or at the  Livingston Observatory. 

For additional information on this release, please contact:
NSBP Headquarters
(703) 536-4207
Source: National Society of Black Physicists Website:
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