Building a Quantum Hall Effect Advanced lab at Augustana is interesting for a number of different reasons.
- This lab will address one of the problems of teaching quantum mechanics; the lack of hands-on experience for a subject that is not intuitive. One of the issues of quantum mechanics is that matter is described by a probability wavefunction. A quantum hall effect lab will therefore be a hands-on approach to viewing the wave nature of matter.
- The Quantum Hall Effect is not an experiment that is commonly done in an undergraduate setting. We have found one other school that provides this lab as an undergraduate advanced lab.
- This lab will fulfill a need in the physics department for more challenging advanced labs.
- This project is a combination of physics research and physics pedagogy. I am still deciding between working toward a teaching job or research job and I hope that the combination of those two aspects of this project will help make my decision.
- This lab will honor Augie alum and Nobel Laureate Daniel Tsui, who earned the Nobel Prize for the Fractional Quantum Hall Effect in 1998.