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Research and Community Impact

web_Jin Lab 03Our faculty members are involved in a wide-range of research activities. The cool part is you’ll be able to help with that research. Whether you're seeking a bachelor's or master’s degree, you will be actively involved in research in physics, astronomy, and/or physics education. All of our majors complete an independent student research project.

In addition, Ranjith Wijesinghe, who specializes in medical physics, and his students are working on two exciting research areas. One is the study of electrical and magnetic properties of propagating action signals in nerve and muscle bundles, and the other is the mathematical modeling of EEG and MEG signals.

Not only are we doing groundbreaking research, our medical physics research has had a significant impact in the Muncie community since 2001.

Our students have been working under the direction of Ball Memorial Hospital’s medical physicists, Al Foster and Joe Butts, preparing for careers in medical physics. While working towards their bachelor’s and masters degrees in physics, our students have been trained in radiation treatment planning, and they are conducting modeling research studies in this area.

Research at Ball State has helped our alumni with their success.

In the spring of 2005, alumnus Jim Longacre completed a project in which he developed a computational model for verifying intensity modulated radiation therapy treatment plans—a new treatment protocol initiated at Ball Hospital in 2004. Shawn Hollars, a 2006 master's degree program graduate, conducted a beam modeling study in the area of stereotactic radiosurgery.

Additional research projects have been conducted by our students and faculty in collaboration with medical physicists at Ball Hospital. The most recently completed project was a design and development project conducted by graduate student Ali Razavieh and Paul Errington, professor emeritus. In this project, an array of 32 radiation detectors was developed to assist in the quality control of the accelerator beams in the hospital’s treatment facility.

These projects are examples of research activities which have impacted treatment at Ball Hospital and may result in future benefits as well.