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  • Overview
  • Research Facilities
  • Computer Facilities
  • Student Machine Shop
  • Bar Fisica
ElectronicsAlong with the wide variety of specialized equipment associated with particular research areas, the department is well provided with general facilities. These include well-equipped machine shops staffed by experienced machinists and instrument makers, and an electronics shop with construction and maintenance technicians. An extensive departmental research and teaching library is located in the Biomedical and Physical Sciences Building. The Cyclotron Laboratory and its support facilities are housed in a separate, neighboring building.


Research facilities include:

  • The National Superconducting Cyclotron Laboratory, which include:two coupled superconducting cyclotrons K500 and K1200, injected by an ECR ion source and associated apparatus, including
    • the modern A1900 fragment separator which allows efficient production and in-flight separation of rare isotopes;
    • the high-resolution S800 superconducting magnetic spectrograph;
    • a high-energy gamma ray detector array;
    • neutron and charged-particle hodoscopes;
    • cryogenic facilities;
    • superconducting magnets;
  • Keck Microfabrication Facility
  • X-ray diffraction apparatus employing X-ray cameras and a 12 Kwatt rotating anode X-ray source;
  • photo and electron-beam lithographic facilities for device fabrication with 50nm resolution;
  • two automated SQUID Susceptometers;
  • an electron spin resonance laboratory;
  • an ultrahigh-vacuum four-gun sputtering system;
  • an advanced test facility for trigger development for the DZero experiment at Fermilab;
  • Acoustic labs
    • 174 cubic meter reverberation room
    • 32 cubic meter anechoic room
    • sound localization test facility
  • a number of data acquisition and analysis computers;
  • a state-of-the-art electronics design facility.
  • High Performance Computing Center

Important off-campus facilities in the high-energy area include the accelerator at Fermilab in Batavia, Illinois; the Brookhaven National Laboratory in Long Island, New York; the accelerator complex at CERN in Geneva, Switzerland and Argonne National Laboratory, where experiments are currently carried out by MSU faculty and students.

The astronomy faculty makes use of the facilities on campus, which include a 0.6m telescope, and of the observatories at Kitt Peak (Arizona), WIRO (Wyoming), Mounts Wilson and Palomar (California), Sliding Springs (Australia), and Cerro Tololo and Las Campanas (Chile). MSU has joined the SOAR consortium and built a 4-meter telescope near La Serena, Chile.

The Department of Physics & Astronomy has an extensive infrastructure of computing and data communications equipment that is constantly being upgraded. Faculty, staff and many graduate assistants have PCs or terminals at their desks. For more information, see computing support.

The University has several micro-computer and graphic laboratories available on campus for use by graduate and undergraduate students on a walk-in basis. Large scale computations can be performed through MSU's new High Performance Computing Center. Computers in the Chemistry Department, the Cyclotron Laboratory and other campus locations, such as the HPCC, can be reached using various networks. WiFi is available in the BPS, most buildings on campus, and many establishments off campus.

Graduate students have the opportunity to construct part or all of their research projects in the student shop, located in the Biomedical and Physical Sciences Building. The student shop is equipped with lathes, drill presses, milling machines, band saws and soldering facilities, as well as a full compliment of hand tools. After completing a six-lesson shop course emphasizing safety and machining techniques, students are encouraged to design and build specialized equipment for their research. The professional staff of the Department machine shop are available for advice and consultation.

Bar FisicaEquipped with an espresso machine, whiteboard, and several cushy chairs, the Bar Fisica lounge serves as an informal conference room for graduate students and professors. Located in 4258 BPS, it primarily serves CMP students and faculty, but all are welcome!

Bar Fisica has a very scenic view of the BPS courtyard, cyclotron, and most of east campus.