Mentorship

I’ve had the opportunity to work with many excellent undergraduate and graduate students in Michael Niemack’s lab here at Cornell. Some descriptions of student projects are listed below. For a complete list of mentees, please see my CV.

Willow Martin (2019 – 2020)

Willow worked on designing and constructing a platform for an FTS to measure optical properties of materials and coatings in our lab within our cryogenic filter wheel system. She was also involved with running cooldowns of a cryogenic testbed.


Noah Sailer (2017 – 2019)

Noah designed a cryogenic filter wheel system for use with an FTS to measure optical properties of materials and coatings in our lab. He was also involved with running cooldowns of our cryogenic testbed and calibrating Cernox thermometers, as well as working with data from ACT to search for FRBs. Noah is now a physics graduate student at UC Berkeley.

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Cernox thermometers on the 4K plate of our cryostat for calibration by Kaiwen and Noah

Dallin Richards (2018 – 2019)

Dallin worked with magnetic shielding, including making magnetic shielding factor measurements, building a degausser, making measurements of SQUIDs in magnetic fields, and learning about cryogenic systems.

Kaiwen Zheng (2016 – 2018)


Kaiwen’s work included learning SolidWorks and designing parts for our lab, testing and modeling magnetic shields using Maxwell, characterizing our Helmholtz coils, and testing SQUIDs and TESes in our dilution refrigerator (E.M. Vavagiakis, S.W. Henderson, K. Zheng et al., Magnetic Sensitivity of AlMn TESes and Shielding Considerations for Next-Generation CMB Surveys, JLTP 2018). She worked on running cooldowns and calibrating Cernox thermometers in our cryogenic testbed, which she also helped to construct. She wrote python scripts for data acquisition and analysis, including temperature and pressure monitoring and detector readout. Kaiwen is now a physics graduate student at Princeton University.

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Kaiwen compares the shielding factor of an MBAC cryoperm shield before and after a dremel cut


Tracy Paltoo (Summer 2016)

Tracy, a physics major at Adelphi University, was a Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation (LSAMP) summer 2016 REU scholar. She learned SolidWorks and designed two sets of mumetal magnetic shields for our cryostats.

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Tracy’s poster from her 2016 summer REU

Prabudhya Bhattacharyya (2015 – 2016)


Pra’s work included learning SolidWorks and designing and modeling parts and equipment for our lab. He designed and constructed a frame for a cryogenic test bed from Minitec components and custom parts. He also helped design and build a set of Helmholtz coils which are currently being used in our lab for detector magnetic sensitivity testing. Pra is now a physics graduate student at UC Berkeley.

MCE Assembly with frame

Pra designs a frame and support for our cryostat and MCE in SolidWorks