USD Physics and Computer Science Major to Present Research to Congress

Photo of Joseph Mammo with research poster. Joseph Mammo will present a poster on his honor’s thesis research project at the annual Posters on the Hill event in Washington, D.C., April 25-26.

VERMILLION, S.D. – Joseph Mammo, a senior physics and computer science major at the University of South Dakota, will present a poster on his honor’s thesis research project at the annual Posters on the Hill event in Washington, D.C., April 25-26.

Mammo, who is from Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, said he looks forward to meeting with members of Congress at the Posters on the Hill event. “This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity and it’s an honor to represent USD,” said Mammo.

Mammo is one of 60 students selected from hundreds of applicants to showcase their research to members of the U.S. Congress. The event is sponsored by the Council on Undergraduate Research, a national organization of individual and institutional members representing more than 900 colleges and universities.

The research Mammo will present during the two-day event centers on his work to develop a computer program system that monitors and controls conditions during nuclear and particle physics experiments. Working with his research mentor Jing Liu, USD assistant professor of physics, Mammo developed a system that monitors the temperature for germanium detectors—used for dark matter research—developed in the department’s radiation detector laboratory. The system allows researchers to collect and visualize data that show the conditions during experiments and to display this information on any device using a web-based interface.

Liu spoke highly of involving undergraduates like Mammo in research. “Undergraduate students have great potential to directly contribute to scientific research given appropriate guidance. They are best motivated by their own achievement to dedicate their career to technology and science,” said Liu.

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