Experimental nuclear and particle physicist. These days I'm teaching, but I've spent a lot of time on nucleon structure in fixed target electron scattering and neutrino oscillations using reactors and beam sources.

Been reading Zemansky & Dittman's book on thermodynamics recently. Quote: ``The concept of temperature is rich in interpretations and levels of abstraction.'' Nice.

1h
comment Deleted question with positive score: when does my rep update
Hmmm ... See the heading "What else should I know about deleted posts?" on meta.stackexchange.com/a/5222/2509. I was wrong on the time, it is 60 days.
1h
comment Is it possible that every single isotope are radioactive, and isotopes which we call stable are actually unstable but have an extremely big half-life?
The answer may well depend on the question of the proton's stability (posited to be unstable in may next-generation models).
1h
comment Deleted question with positive score: when does my rep update
How old was the post? Points gained on posts that are older than some threshold (I think 6 months) are not lost on deletion. This resulted from a hard fought comprimize over the removal of some questions from the early days of Stack Overflow when, years later, the site culture had changed substantially from the wild west days of the public beta and its immediate aftermath.
8h
comment Why are log scales so common?
While Why is the decibel scale logarithmic? has a more specific title at least some of the answers actually address this more general question.
22h
comment Can I become an engineer and a physicist?
Put it this way: most people who study theoretical physics don't have what it take to actually get support for doing research in theoretical physics. Have independent funding? Well, I guess what you do is up to you. But if you need to get paid for it, then the competition is stiff.
23h
awarded Nice Answer
1d
comment Why do lines in atomic spectra have thickness? (Bohr's Model)
Bohr's model was a kludge that barely lasted a decade as the model that scientists actually used. It's still taught, not because it is right but because (a) it's easy and (b) it is a stepping stone to a better theory. With emphasis on the easy part. This question was never tackled in it.
1d
revised X-ray background radiation
speling
2d
comment If the LHC-calculated mass of the Higgs is wrong, how long will it take to determine this with confidence?
I'm not sure you understand how big collaborations work. There is internal cross-checking, and grad-students and post-docs have a strong need to stand out (in a positive way!) if they are to get a good job. Being the guy or gal who found a major error is a great way to start developing a reputation as a first rate scientist. There is also competition between different member institutions, so no PI can be confident that of bulling the point. You are positing a conspiracy with 10,000+ participants many of whom are going to be booted from academia in the long run (some are bitter about it).
2d
comment Why does $F=ma$? Is there a straightforward reason?
@garyp I think there is room for multiple interpretations on this matter, but for whatever it is worth Marion and Thornten disagree with you. Their Classical Mechanics text spends some time noodling around the idea of the second law as the (or at least a) definition of mass.
2d
comment Mass-Spring system on an accelerating jet
Flip the question around (so to speak) what if, instead of running the problem horizontally you hung the mass from the spring?
2d
comment Why does $F=ma$? Is there a straightforward reason?
It is worth remembering that physics (like all science) is at its heart descriptive. We seek a set of rules that allow us to correctly describe the world. And while we have some very powerful chains of reasoning that allow us to explain why certain complicated phenomena happen in terms of simple rules the foundation that every single one of those chains rests on is "because the world is observed to work this way". The reason for $\vec{a} = (\sum \vec{F})/m$ is "because the world is observed to work this way".
2d
comment Why should one answer a no-answer question?
John may not be telling you that you are on the wrong site, but I am. Policy on the ownership of questions and the ability to accept is a network-wide thing and as such the question on meta.stackexchange.com is the place where it will actually get thrashed out. Or more to the point has been thrashed out for a few years now. You can go there and make your case, but this post is not going to achieve anything.
2d
comment What is the particle distribution in Saturn's Ring System?
"Would Newtonian physics not dictate that objects of different masses at the same elevation must travel at different speeds to maintain orbit?" It's worth noting that $m_\text{ring object}/m_\text{planet}$ is a very, very small number. Why don't you compute the difference in circular orbital velocities between, say 1 gram and 100 kg objects in, say, the F ring. It is an instructive calculation.
2d
comment Homework questions as a knowledge resource
@AlfredCentauri Looking for---and eventually obtaining---a teaching position has made it my new passion.
2d
comment beta minus decay: expression for maximum electron energy
Hmmm ... "because of the mass scales the beta and the neutrino take the bulk of the kinetic energy" is better. Now, that is largely understood when people talk about this problem but being explicit about it can't hurt your understanding. It is also useful to apply the non-relativistic and ultra-relativistic approximation for the kinetic energy where appropriate.
Mar
27
comment Is the lay explanation of the equivalence principle wrong?
More sophisticated arguments at that level include some language equivalent to "in a sufficiently small laboratory", which is strictly correct as the equivalence principle is a local (in the technical sense) statement.
Mar
27
revised Homework questions as a knowledge resource
added 1 character in body
Mar
27
answered Homework questions as a knowledge resource
Mar
27
awarded Nice Answer
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