12 January 2016

Road trip for chief scientist

MagLab Chief Scientist Laura Greene (left) with Tom Mareci and Joanna Long of AMRIS. MagLab Chief Scientist Laura Greene (left) with Tom Mareci and Joanna Long of AMRIS. Elizabeth Webb

This week at the lab our new chief scientist is on the road, connecting the dots that are the National MagLab’s many instruments, techniques and experts.

Physicist Laura Greene, who was named the lab’s chief scientist last year, traveled from the lab’s Florida State University headquarters to the University of Florida in Gainesville, home to two of the lab’s seven user facilities: the High B/T Facility and the Advanced Magnetic Resonance Imaging and Spectroscopy facility (AMRIS). 

Greene (pictured above left with Tom Mareci and Joanna Long of AMRIS) will learn about the special capabilities the facilities offer, including dynamic nuclear polarization (DNP), a promising technique under development at AMRIS and at the MagLab’s Tallahassee-based Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Facility. More familiar to biologists and chemists, DNP may also be a powerful tool for condensed matter physicists, said Greene. President-elect of the American Physical Society, Greene says a big part of her MagLab job will be identifying and building these types of fertile, cross-disciplinary relationships.

When scientists learn from colleagues at a different facility or lab about the research they are working on it, "People are astounded and excited by it," said Greene. "But then they go back and they’re busy. So it’s going to be my job to help keep the flywheel going … to keep it as single MagLab, make sure we learn from each other."

Greene hopes the connections she is fostering will result both in more scientific publications authored by MagLab staff from multiple facilities as well as publications spawned by collaborations with other national labs and industry. Through her work with the Center for Emergent Superconductivity, Greene has close ties to both Brookhaven and Argonne national laboratories.

Photo by Elizabeth Webb / Text by Kristen Coyne

Last modified on 12 January 2016