Akeley-Lawrence Science Center 117D
Phone: (605) 677-7221
Dr. Xu received his Ph.D. from the University of California, Los Angeles, studying heavy flavor quarks in heavy ion collisions created at the Brookhaven National Lab and measuring the theta13 neutrino mixing angle with the Daya Bay Reactor Neutrino Experiment. He worked at the Los Alamos National Lab and the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, focusing on understanding the properties of neutrinos. He joined USD in 2016.
Nuclear and Particle Physics, Introductory Physics and Astronomy, Statistics in Physics
I am intrigued by fundamental particles and interactions that could explain how the Universe works. My research broadly incorporate Neutrinos and Fundamental Symmetries, Dark Matter and Axions, Physics Beyond the Standard Model, Hadronic Physics and Detector Development. In particular, neutrinos were thought to have zero mass for a long time. The discovery of neutrino oscillations and the consequent non-zero neutrino masses provided a direct and unambiguous evidence of physics beyond the Standard Model. Yet, the origin of neutrino masses remains a mystery and is considered as one of the most compelling questions in physics. The answer to this question is related to the particle-antiparticle nature of neutrinos and could hold a key to why there is much more matter than antimatter in the Universe and why we exist. My current focus is the MAJORANA DEMONSTRATOR experiment, which is located in South Dakota (4850' below underground at the Sanford Underground Research Facility. sanfordlab.org). This experiment is part of a global effort to understand the properties of neutrinos and, in particular, it utilizes High Purity Germanium (HPGe) detectors to search for neutrinoless double beta decay and other new physics, including dark matter and axions.
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