Physics students participate in Hope tradition (Nykerk).

Physics majors Maggie Haeussler (center, hands raised) and Gillian Donley (far right, top hat) compete in Nykerk as cast members of the Even Year Play. Nykerk is an annual song, play, and oration competition between the women of Even year (freshman class of 2026) and Odd Year (sophomore class of 2025). Each class presents a short choir piece, a one person speech, and a one act play about Hope College. Gillian appears as Jack H. Miller, namesake of the Music Center and Maggie appears as Dutch, the personification of Hope Spirit.

Research with the particle accelerator continues.

Bishop (Hope’26) is doing research using Hope College’s particle accelerator. He is holding up a thin piece of mylar and a practice sample. The mylar will reduce the beam energy of the particle accelerator to estimated levels of space radiation that could hit and potentially damage solar cells used in outer space.

Searching for PFAS (perfluorooctanoic acid) in the Environment

PFAS are chemicals that have been used in industry and consumer products since the 1950’s. They are in non-stick pans, special fabrics, carpets and even firefighting foams.  PFAS has leached into the environment and scientific  studies have shown PFAS in animals and humans all over the world. More research is needed to understand the harmful effects of PFAS. Michael Silvestry (Hope’25) is doing research using the Hope College Particle Accelerator to try to measure trace amounts of PFAS in environmental samples. As part of his work he is using a Lyophilizer (or in other words a freeze dryer) to concentrate the samples through sublimation.

Michael (Hope’25) inspects a frozen PFAS sample taken from a vacuum
oven attached to a Lyophilizer. Special thanks to Dr. Maria Hledin
(Hope College BioChemisty) for the use of her equipment and research

Dr. Judy Kammeraad (Physics graduate at Hope College, class of ’76) comes back to visit.

Dr. Kammeraad talking about 30 years of her career as a nuclear scientist at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory.
Dr. Kammeraad looking at our new accelerator, remembering her days working with the previous one.