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.

Examples of Undergraduate Research

Past Research Projects

  • Studies of Biomembranes, and Peptide-Membrane Interactions
  • Casimir Force: Measuring Vacuum Fluctuations
  • Deposition of Hydrophobic Materials from Drying Drops
  • Detector Development for High Energy Physics
  • Gravitational Fields of Topological Defects
  • Monte Carlo Simulations of Quasicrystals and Ferrofluids
  • Preparation, Characterization, and Properties of Buckyballs and Nanocrystals
  • RF Surface Impedance Studies of Type-I Superconductors
  • Silicon Vertex Detector Resolution Studies
  • Thermal Lensing
  • X-ray Scattering Experiments
  • Pulse Design in NMR Quantum Computing

Past Publications by Undergraduate Students

  • Kumagai, A., Dupuy, F.G., Arsov, Z., Elhady, Y., Moody, D., Ernst, R.K., Deslouches, B., Montelaro, R.C., Di, Y.P., Tristram-Nagle, S., Elastic Behavior of Model Membranes with Antimicrobial Peptides Depends on Lipid Specificity and D-enantiomers, Soft Matter, (2019),15, 1860-1868
  • M.F. Matty, L. Lancaster, W. Griffin, and R.H. Swendsen, Comparison of canonical and microcanonical definitions of entropy, Physica A 467 (2017), 474

  • A.Z. Stetten, G. Moraca, T.E. Corcoran, S. Tristram-Nagle, S. Garoff, T.M. Przybycien, and R.D. Tilton, Enabling Marangoni flow at air-liquid interfaces through deposition of aerosolized lipid dispersions, J. Colloid Interf. Sci. 484 (2016), 270

  • A. Gurvich and R. Mandelbaum, The impact of correlated noise on galaxy shape estimation for weak lensing, MNRAS 457 (2016), 3522
  • L. O’Neil, K. Andenoro, I. Pagano, L. Carroll, L. Langer, Z. Dell, D. Perera, B.W. Treece, F. Heinrich, M. Lösche, J.F. Nagle, and S. Tristram-Nagle. HIV-1 Matrix-31 membrane minding peptide interacts differently with membranes containing PS vs. PI(4,5)P2. Biochim. Biophys. Acta 1858 (2016), 3071