Physics
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The Murchison Widefield Array 21cm Epoch of Reionization Experiment: Design, Construction, and First Season Results
The Cosmic Dark Ages and the Epoch of Reionization (EoR) remain largely unexplored chapters in the history and evolution of the Universe. These periods hold the potential to inform our picture of the cosmos similar to what ... 
Developments for the $^6$He $\beta\bar{\nu}$ angular correlation experiment
This thesis describes developments toward the measurement of the angular correlation between the beta and the antineutrino in the beta decay of $^6$He. This decay is a pure GamowTeller decay which is described in the ... 
Ab initio calculations of phonon properties and spectra in condensed matter
Phonons, the quantization of atomic vibrations, are important in studying many solid state properties, ranging from Raman, infrared, and neutron scattering to thermal expansion, specific heat, and heat conductivity to ... 
A SubMillimeter ParallelPlate Test of Gravity
Newton's inversesquare law of gravitation is the oldest standing mathematical description of a fundamental interaction. Experimental tests of gravity's distancedependence define a frontier between our understanding of ... 
Optical Studies of Ultrathin WSe2
Truly twodimensional systems allow for examination of quasiparticle physics in the presence of strong Coulomb interactions resulting from reduced dielectric screening and under conditions of energy level quantization due ... 
An Investigation of Student Understanding of Classical Ideas Related to Quantum Mechanics: Potential Energy Diagrams and Spatial Probability Density
This dissertation describes the results of two related investigations into introductory student understanding of ideas from classical physics that are key elements of quantum mechanics. One investigation probes the extent ... 
Dark Matter Particle Astrophysics: How Dark Matter Can Affect Subhalos, Neutrinos, and Neutron Stars
Predicted almost a century ago, dark matter explains many astrophysical observations including the motion of matter on galaxy and galaxy cluster scales, the clustering of galaxies, and the anisotropies in the cosmic microwave ... 
Towards SelfCorrecting Quantum Memories
This thesis presents a model of selfcorrecting quantum memories where quantum states are encoded using topological stabilizer codes and error correction is done using local measurements and local dynamics. Quantum noise ... 
Fixing the Standard Model: From Dark Matter to the Baryon Asymmetry of the Universe
Since its foundation in the 20th century, the Standard Model has been immensely powerful in explaining many particle physics phenomena. With the discovery of the Higgs boson at the LHC, the Standard Model seems to be ... 
Optoelectronic Properties of TwoDimensional Materials
Layered materials when thinned down to their monolayer limit exhibit remarkable properties owing to their twodimensional nature and strong electron confinement. In particular this class of materials displays strong optical ... 
Classical and Quantum Computation in Ground States and Beyond
In this dissertation we study classical and quantum spin systems with applications to the theory of computation. In particular, we examine computational aspects of these systems beyond their ground states by considering ... 
New techniques and first results toward measuring the 6S(1/2) to 5D(3/2) magneticdipole transition moment in Ba+
We report the final results from our firstgeneration attempt to measure the magneticdipole transition moment (M1) between the $6S_{1/2}$ and $5D_{3/2}$ manifolds in Ba$^{+}$. Knowledge of M1 is crucial for a paritynon ... 
Molecular Effects in Tritium BetaDecay NeutrinoMass Measurements
An understanding of the molecular final state distribution is crucial to extracting a neutrino mass from molecular tritiumbased experiments including the upcoming Karlsruhe Tritium Neutrino Mass Experiment. This dissertation ... 
Torsion Pendulum Searches for Macroscopic SpinInteractions as a Window on New Physics
The interactions of intrinsic particle spin offer a powerful window into important aspects of new physics, such as hidden high energy symmetries and CPviolation. This dissertation describes a new spin 20pole torsion ... 
Identifying and addressing student difficulties with electrostatics and magnetostatics in introductory and advanced courses
This dissertation describes an investigation of student conceptual understanding of statics concepts in E&M, at the introductory and junior level. At the introductory level, this research led to the development of three ... 
A novel method for electron energy measurement: Cyclotron Radiation Emission Spectroscopy
A prototype spectrometer  the first of its kind  has been constructed at the University of Washington to demonstrate a new technique for βdecay studies called Cyclotron Radiation Emission Spectroscopy (CRES). The ... 
Mixed Species Ion Chains for Scalable Quantum Computation
Mixed species chains of barium and ytterbium ions are investigated as a tool for building scalable quantum computation devices. Ytterbium ions provide a stable, environmentallyinsensitive qubit that is easily initialized ... 
An improved lowtemperature RFcavity search for darkmatter axions
Axions are hypothetical elementary particles that may help provide the answer as to why QCD preserves the discrete symmetries P and CP. Light axions also have properties that make them ideal darkmatter candidates. The ... 
Interactions in the Ultracold Lithium Ytterbium 3P2 System
I detail the execution and results of experiments in a mixture of ultracold atomic gases using fermionic lithium (6Li) and bosonic ytterbium (174Yb) in the metastable 3P2 state. We demonstrate efficient transfer of ground ... 
Xray spectroscopy studies of nonradiative energy transfer processes in luminescent lanthanide materials
Luminescent materials play important roles in energy sciences, through solid state lighting and possible applications in solar energy utilization, and in biomedical research and applications, such as in immunoassays and ...