Michael Wiescher

Freimann Professor
Nuclear Physics

Vordiplom in Physics Universität Münster, Physikalisches Institut, 1972
Diplom in Solid State Physics, ibid., 1975
Ph.D. in Nuclear Physics Universität Münster, (summa cum laude) Institut für Kernphysik, 1980
E-mail: mwiesche (at) nd (dot) edu
Address: 181 Nieuwland Science Hall
Phone: (574) 631-6788
Fax: (574) 631-5952

Nuclear Science Laboratory
White Paper on Nuclear Astrophysics
Nuclear Warfare, Spring 2010
Physics Methods in Art & Archaeology
Junior Seminar, Fall 2009

Research Interests

The central research interest of Prof. Wiescher’s group is the study of nuclear reactions important to the understanding of energy production and the origin of the elements in stars and in explosive stellar environments. Currently, the group’s research focuses on understanding nucleosynthesis in explosive hydrogen and helium burning processes that occur in novae, supernovae and accreting neutron stars. In addition, his group studies nucleosynthesis in the late stages of stellar development, in particular in AGB stars. The group investigates nuclear reactions experimentally and implements the results in large scale network calculations to simulate stellar burning conditions.

The experiments for the study of proton and alpha capture reactions are predominantly done at the FN-Pelletron-Tandem accelerator and the KN/JN Van de Graff accelerators at Notre Dame. To study nuclear reactions far off stability, Prof. Wiescher’s group concentrates significant experimental efforts on the use of the coupled cyclotron at Michigan State University as well as the ATLAS LINAC accelerator at Argonne National Laboratory. The group is also intensively involved in experiments with radioactive beams at TRIUMF/Vancouver (Canada) and at Louvain-la-Neuve (Belgium). The measurements of neutron induced reactions are based at the Forschungszentrum Karlsruhe (Germany) and have been expanded to the n-ToF neutron spallation source at CERN (Switzerland).

Prof. Wiescher is the Director for the Joint Institute for Nuclear Astrophysics (JINA). JINA is funded as a NSF Physics Frontier Center between the University of Notre Dame, Michigan State University , the University of Chicago , and Argonne National Laboratory to address critical questions about the origin of heavy elements in nature or nuclear processes on compact stellar objects.

Selected Publications

“Current Quests in Nuclear Astrophysics and Experimental Approaches,” F. Käppeler, F.K. Thielemann, and M. Wiescher, Ann. Rev. Part. Nucl. Science 48, 175 (1998).

“The Effects of new Nuclear Reaction Rates and Opacities on Hydrodynamic Simulations of the Nova Outburst,” S. Starrfield, W. Sparks, J.W. Truran, and M. Wiescher, Astrophys. J. Suppl. 127, 485 (2000).

“End Point of the rp-Process on Accreting Neutron Stars,” H. Schatz, A. Aprahamian, V. Barnard, L. Bildsten, A. Cumming, M. Ouellette, T. Rauscher, F.-K. Thielemann, and M. Wiescher, Phys. Rev. Lett. 86, 3471 (2001).

“Nuclear Reactions and Stellar Processes,” K. Langanke and M. Wiescher, Rep. Prog. Phys. 64, 1657 (2001).

“Elastic a-12C Scattering and the 12C(a ,g )16O E2 S-Factor,” P. Tischhauser, R.E. Azuma, L. Buchmann, R. Detwiler, U. Giesen, J. Görres, M. Heil, J. Hinnefeld, F. Käppeler, J.J. Kolata, H. Schatz, A. Shotter, E. Stech, S. Vouzoukas, and M. Wiescher, Phys. Rev. Lett. 88, 072501-1 (2002).

Honors and Activities

Fellow, American Association for the Advancement of Science
Fellow, American Physical Society
Hans A. Bethe Prize winner 2003, APS, Division of Astrophysics & Division of Nuclear Physics

CV - Prof. Wiescher