Assistant Professor of Physics Receives a $60,114 Grant from NASA

Dr. Ka-Wah Wong, Assistant Professor of Physics, was awarded a $60,114.25 grant from NASA’s NuSTAR X-ray Observatory for high energy astrophysics research.

Dr. Ka-Wah Wong, Assistant Professor of Physics, was awarded a $60,114.25 grant from NASA’s NuSTAR X-ray Observatory for high energy astrophysics research.

The research involves X-ray observations of a low-luminosity active galactic (LLAGN) inside a radio galaxy detected with very high energy (VHE) gamma ray emission.  AGNs are compact radiation regions at centers of galaxies powered by accretion of gas onto supermassive black holes. The most powerful AGNs can out outshine their entire galaxies, but most of them emit much less radiation and are classified as LLAGNs.  

Therefore, studying LLAGNs will be the key to understanding the full picture of AGNs or supermassive black hole systems.  X-ray emission has been detected in LLAGNs, but the origin of the emission is still under debate.  NuSTAR will allow the research team to investigate the poorly understood nature of X-ray and VHE gamma ray emission.

The funding will support undergraduate research projects in the astrophysics group in the Physics Department.  In working with Dr. Wong, students at SUNY Brockport will be among the first to witness some of the most energetic phenomena in the universe.  They will learn frontier science while gaining skills in statistical data analysis and computer coding.  The funding will also provide travel support for the students to present research results at regional and national conferences.

The award will be administered by The Research Foundation for SUNY at SUNY Brockport.

Back to Brockport Today

Contact:

Laura Merkl: lmerkl@brockport.edu

Posted: April 07, 2022