Carnegie Mellon University

Undergraduate research is an important, and popular, component of student education in physics. It can be performed for credit, for pay, or just for fun. While research with faculty members in the department during the academic year or summer is prevalent, many students also participate in summer research internships or summer job internships on University campuses, in government laboratories and with corporate facilities throughout the United States.

Please first contact a department advisor if you are interested in doing research during the semester with one of our faculty members. We will assist you in finding a suitable faculty member and research project. Also check out the Gelfand Center's STEM Career Explorations and 360° Lab Tours with Prof. Alison and Prof. Tristram-Nagle to get a sense of what it means to conduct research as an undergraduate!

Examples of Undergraduate Research

Past Research Projects

  • Analysis of the Replication Length of E. coli Cells
  • Artificial Intelligence Applications in Cosmology
  • Circular Dichroism Studies of E2-0005 in Three Model Membranes
  • Deep Learning for Anomaly Detection in the CMS Detector at CERN
  • Design of Fast Magnetostatic Logic Devices
  • Further Developing Iteration Methods for 2D CVM Ising Model Alloys
  • Inflationary Gravitational Waves in Nonstandard Cosmologies and the NANOGrav Results
  • Monte Carlo Simulation of Neutron-Detector Calibration
  • Survey of Galaxy Dark Matter Distribution
  • Validation of Simulated Neutrino Flux at a Stopped-Pion Neutrino Source

Past Publications by Undergraduate Students

  • R.W. Loney, B. Brandner, M.P. Dagan, P.N. Smith, M. Roche, J.R. Fritz, S.B. Hall and S. Tristram-Nagle, Changes in membrane elasticity caused by the hydrophobic surfactant proteins correlate poorly with adsorption of lipid vesicles, Soft Matter (2021) 17, 12, 3358-3366
  • L. Huang, R.A.C. Croft, H. Arora, Deep forest: Neural network reconstruction of the lyman-α forest, MNRAS stab2041 (2021)
  • B. Parks, A. Abdelgawad, T. Wong, R.F.L. Evans, and S.A. Majetich, Magnetoresistance dynamics in superparamagnetic core-shell nanodots, Phys. Rev. App. 13, 014063 (2020)
  • J. Myles et al., Dark Energy Survey Year 3 results: redshift calibration of the weak lensing source galaxies, MNRAS 505, 3, 4249-4277 (2020)
  • F. Heinrich et al., Synergistic Biophysical Techniques Reveal Structural Mechanisms of Engineered Cationic Antimicrobial Peptides in Lipid Model Membranes, Chem. Phys. Lip. 226:104833 (2020)