Paul Hamilton wins the 2018 DARPA Young Faculty Award

Assistant Professor Paul Hamilton has been awarded the prestigious DARPA Young Faculty Award. Professor Hamilton and his lab focus on exploring a new direction for the field of Atomic, Molecular, and Optical (AMO) physics using atom interferometry to probe the properties of dark matter and dark energy using laser-cooled atoms.

The chief aim of AMO physics is to manipulate and control matter at the quantum level to enable a host of new technologies and fundamental physics measurements. Many of the technologies necessary for the modern world, e.g. lasers and GPS, have their roots in AMO physics. Matter wave interferometry, in particular, can be used to precisely measure accelerations and rotations.  Professor Hamilton's research into improving these techniques could one day lead to devices that enable precise navigation without GPS.

The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) Young Faculty Award (YFA) program aims to identify and engage rising stars in junior faculty positions in academia and equivalent positions at non-profit research institutions and expose them to Department of Defense (DoD) and National Security challenges and needs. In particular, this YFA will provide high-impact funding to elite researchers early in their careers to develop innovative new research directions in the context of enabling transformative DoD capabilities.

The long-term goal of the program is to develop the next generation of scientists and engineers in the research community who will focus a significant portion of their future careers on DoD and National Security issues. DARPA is particularly interested in identifying outstanding researchers who have previously not been performers on DARPA programs, but the program is open to all qualified applicants with innovative research ideas. 

To read more about Professor Hamilton's work, view the Hamilton Lab webpage.