KU Awarded Physics Research Grant by National Science Foundation

Dr. Kunal K. Das, professor of physics at Kutztown University, has been awarded a research grant by the National Science Foundation (NSF) in the amount of $180,000 over three years (2023-2026). This marks the fifth consecutive grant from the NSF for Das, whose research has been continuously funded since 2010 by the premier federal agency for the support of basic research in the United States.

The grant for his research titled, “Quantum Correlations and Dynamics of Ring Sensors and Simulators” will continue and substantially expand ongoing efforts on developing ultracold atoms in ring-shaped configurations as a competitive alternate platform, for high precision sensors and for simulating a broad range of quantum mechanical phenomena. His prior work has led to a U.S. patent award. This grant will also provide undergraduate student research opportunities.

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Das is a theoretical physicist working in the realm of quantum physics. His research has been driven by his deep interest in understanding the puzzling and highly non-intuitive foundations of quantum theory. It has been recognized in recent years that quantum mechanics will play an increasingly crucial rule in the technology of the 21st century, with broad applications that will transcend limits imposed by traditional physics methodology.

With this award, Das has been the recipient of nearly $900,000 in research funding in his career, the majority during his tenure at Kutztown University. In all his awards, he has been the sole investigator listed.

The research conducted by Das is also notable for strong involvement of undergraduate students. Over the last 13 years, Das has trained and mentored around 40 students in theoretical physics research, with many of them appearing as co-authors in his numerous peer-reviewed publications in premier physics journals, as well as presenting in international conferences. Das takes great pride in the excellent placement of the students who have worked with him, with many continuing their studies at top institutions like Harvard, Cornell, M.I.T. and Brown.

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This new grant will allow Das to sustain and grow the outstanding program of theoretical physics research and student mentoring, which Das has built up over the course of several years at Kutztown University.

Learn more about KU’s Department of Physics at kutztown.edu/physics.

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