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Joint Institute for Nuclear Astrophysics

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PFC: Joint Institute for Nuclear Astrophysics, JINA  (University of Notre Dame)

Research Focus & Anticipated Benefits

The Joint Institute for Nuclear Astrophysics (JINA) is a collaborative Physics Frontiers Center (PFC) supported by the National Science Foundation (NSF) and managed by Argonne National Laboratory, Michigan State University, the University of Chicago, and the University of Notre Dame. Physics Frontiers Centers foster major advances at the intellectual frontiers of physics by providing university-based resources not usually available to individual investigators or small groups.

JINA provides an intellectual center with the goal to enable swift communication and stimulating collaborations across field boundaries and provides a focus point in the rapidly growing and diversifying field of astrophysics. The rapid growth of observational results, tremendously expanding computational capabilities, and new experimental and theoretical opportunities to probe and simulate the behavior of nuclei under extreme conditions is bringing answers to many open questions within reach.

Education & Outreach

JINA's outreach programs are focused on connecting the science of JINA with all audiences, as well as providing opportunities for meaningful collaboration whenever possible. Goals include contributing to science education at the K-12 level, enhancing understanding and appreciation of science by engaging the imagination of the public (especially through use of the Internet), and increasing diversity in the field of nuclear astrophysics.

Michigan State, Notre Dame, and the University of Chicago all Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) programs that allow participants to do their own summer research while earning a stipend. A additional research experience program brings high school students to work in the Nuclear Structure Laboratory for one or more semesters and earn college course credit while doing research under the supervision of JINA scientists. From Art to Science brings JINA together with art and reading programs to introduce children to the wonders of the physical universe. JINA provides books, art supplies, and knowledgeable physics instructors to lead children in the creation of art based on the stuff of stars.

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Image

  • artist's rendering of a neutron star accreting matter
Artist's rendering of a neutron star accreting matter from a red giant star.
Tony Piro, University of California, Berkeley