The Pursuit of Particles
James Dolen, assistant professor in PNW’s Department of Chemistry and Physics, dedicates his research to discovering new particles and working to better understand the forces and fundamental building blocks of our universe. He collaborates on projects at both Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory (Fermilab) in Batavia, Illinois and at the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) in Geneva, Switzerland.
Professor Dolen and his students are currently working to build particle detector devices to be installed at CERN and to use these devices, along with machine learning classification algorithms, to study and discover new particles.
He takes pride in bringing students to Fermilab and providing them with the opportunity to analyze data from the world’s most powerful particle accelerator, the Large Hadron Collider at CERN. This hands-on experience serves to both motivate and train future scientists and engineers.
Professor Dolen’s teaching focuses on both the forefront of modern physics research (quantum mechanics, cosmology, and particle and nuclear physics) and on classical concepts such as force and energy. He also includes computational projects in his courses, as computer programming is increasingly becoming a critical component of science and engineering careers.