Gadway selected for U.S. Air Force Young Investigator Research Program

Siv Schwink
11/14/2017

Assistant Professor Bryce Gadway meets with graduate students in his laboratory in the Loomis Laboratory of Physics.
Assistant Professor Bryce Gadway meets with graduate students in his laboratory in the Loomis Laboratory of Physics.
Assistant Professor Bryce Gadway of the Department of Physics at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign has been selected for the 2017 U.S. Air Force Young Investigator Research Program. Gadway is among 43 early-career scientists and engineers nationwide to receive this three-year award of $450,000. U.S. Air Force Young Investigators are selected based on demonstrated exceptional ability and promise for conducting basic research in scientific and engineering areas identified as strategic to the US Air Force mission.

Gadway is an atomic, molecular, and optical (AMO) experimentalist, who has developed novel quantum simulation techniques for probing electronic transport in condensed matter systems. Quantum-simulation is an approach to gaining insight into the behavior of complex systems by emulating them with an ideal, model setup. Gadway’s group uses finely tuned lasers to trap ultracold atoms about a billion times colder than room temperature, creating a momentum-space lattice that replicates the properties and behaviors of electronic transport in real materials. AMO experimentation allows greater control over experimental parameters than could be achieved in real materials: these simulated materials are without defect, and individual variables can be finely tuned.

This award will support a new direction in Gadway’s AMO research: he will be looking at the underlying dynamics of emergent phenomena that arise in complex systems of many interacting quantum particles.  In other work, Gadway and his team have demonstrated the effectiveness of their unique “bottom-up approach” to Hamiltonian engineering, through novel explorations into topological and disordered lattice systems. In this new work, Gadway’s team will refine their approach and study the role of strong interactions in topological and disordered atomic fluids.

Gadway received a bachelor’s degree in physics from Colgate University in 2007 and a doctoral degree in physics from Stony Brook University in 2012. He was a National Research Council postdoctoral research fellow, completing his postdoctoral work at JILA in Boulder, CO, before joining the faculty at Physics Illinois in 2014. He is the recipient of Stony Brook University’s President's Award to Distinguished Doctoral Students (2013) and of the American Physical Society’s Leroy Apker Award (2007).

 

Recent News

Quantum information science has been called the next technological “space race.” And the University of Illinois is positioning itself to be at the forefront of that race. In November, the U of I pledged $15 million for the formation of the Illinois Quantum Information Science and Technology Center (or IQUIST). Two of the leading experts in the field, Illinois physics professors Brian DeMarco and Paul Kwiat join the show to discuss its vast future applications. Both professors represented the University of Illinois at the first ever Chicago Quantum Summit in November. DeMarco was invited to the Advancing American Leadership in Quantum Information Science Summit at the White House last fall.

  • In the Media

Anderson was a strong believer in education and his philanthropy and volunteerism reflected this. He was dedicated to providing educational opportunities to others.  He served as a Life Trustee at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and was a trustee of the Norwalk Community College Foundation. He was a member of the Visiting Committee of the University of Illinois College of Engineering, where he was inducted into their Engineering Hall of Fame in 2010. He and his wife Lois sponsored the Distance Learning Center at Illinois and endowed scholarships at R.P.I., Norwalk Community College and Northwestern University.

  • In the Media

As the chair of the NASA Fundamental Physical Sciences  Review Board, which has oversight responsibility for the recently launched Cold Atom Laboratory (CAL), Professor Brian DeMarco plays a seminal role in the "Coolest Experiment in the Universe," taking place on the International Space Station. DeMarco is featured in the video released in conjunction with this press release. The ultra-cold-atom experiment will study a Bose-Einstein condensate in space to uncover a new understanding of its properties and interactions at a temperature barely above absolute zero.

  • Accolades

Professor Peter Abbamonte has been named the Fox Family Professor in Engineering at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Named faculty appointments signify a distinction beyond that of professorial rank, recognizing distinguished scholars for their prominence in research, teaching, and service.