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Physics & Astronomy

Physics and Astronomy Senior Theses

Every Carthage student is required to submit a senior thesis or capstone project to demonstrate their mastery of their chosen area of study. Here is a look at the projects Carthage physics majors have created for this requirement:


  • Aaron Scheets: Writing A Fluid Solver From First Principles
  • Tammy Kylloe: The Effects of Limb Darkening on the Measurements of the Physical Properties of Exoplanets
  • Michael Moen: Principal Component Analysis of Diffuse Interstellar Band Carriers
  • Christopher Ettner: Quad-copter Design and Control Using PID Methodology
  • Daisy Bower: Remote sensing of Carbonate based Minerals: A Literature Study of Remote Sensing Technologies
  • Tessa Rundle: Advancements in the Modal Propellant Gauging Experiment
  • Justin Barhite: Entangled State Purity in CHSH Inequality Tests
  • Brendan Krull: Correcting for Limitations in Temperature Sensing Response Time
  • Tod Schulter: Aerodynamic Properties of a Model Airfoil
  • Scott Draka: Material Advancement in Prosthetic Limb Development


  • Amelia Gear: Onset of Normal-Field Instability in a Ferrofluid in Microgravity
  • Trechelle Castro: Structural Finite Element Analysis
  • Julia Henning: Creating a Module for Implementation in Secondary Physics Classroom
  • Erika Herrmann: Investigating Vocal Formant Frequencies and Bandwidths Using a Two-Cavity Model of the Vocal Tract
  • Mike Brusich: The Earth’s Electric Field
  • Eric Ireland: Microgravity Fuel Gauging Using Modal Analysis
  • Steven Kalberg: The Difference in Friction Between GF-4 and GF-5 Engine Oil
  • Kyle Weber: Protein Folding for Dummies Rocket Scientists: Understanding the Physical and Thermodynamic Laws that Govern a Biochemical Phenomenon
  • Connor Knutson: The Planetary System of 55 CANCRI
  • Cory Schrandt: An Analysis of Spectral Absorption Line Asymmetries in HD 175156


  • Chad Kelterborn: Analysis of Step-Wise Leader Extensions in Cloud to Ground Lightning Discharges
  • Joseph Schwarzhoff: Mechanical Advantage of the Horizontally Opposed Engine
  • Richard LaHue: Modeling the Dynamics of the F-Ring of Saturn
  • John Robinson: Analysis of the Solar Wind
  • Jacob Mahaffey: Modeling the Fission Power and Decay Heat Rate of a Typical 235U Nuclear Reactor
  • Douglas Vodnik: Normal Modes and Frequencies of a Helicoseir


  • Kim Schultz: Phase transitions in the Ising model with random gap defects using the Monte Carlo method
  • Coty Tatge: Classification of the Asteroid 9983 Rickfienberg using B, V, and R Photometry
  • Ryan O’Reilly: Traffic Modeling with Fluid Mechanics
  • Chris Burch: Correlations Related to Discrepancies and Similarities Between Professor and Student Perceptions in the Intermediate Physics Classroom
  • Simon Skluzacek: Measuring and Modeling the Angular Resolution of Human Hearing
  • Eric Shinnick: Determining the Cost Effectiveness, Emissions Reduction, and Power Consumption of Full Scale Adoption of the Electric Vehicle


  • Erin Gross: Modeling of Saturated Hydraulic Conductivity using Ground Basalt’s Average Soil Pore Volume and Density Measurements
  • Ian Brodie: The Dynamic Cadence of Chaos: Fluid Properties affect Chaos Emergence in a Dripping Faucet System
  • Cecilia Grove: The Development of a Global Climate Model for the Simulation of Four Carbon Dioxide Scenarios
  • Jenny Nicklaus: No Diffuse Interstella Bands in Circumstellar Material
  • Justin Sebens: Celestial Alignment of Kemper Center Telescope
  • Don Shoemaker: Is the Rapiscan Secure 1000 safe? An exploration of the physics behind ionizing radiation
  • Brendan Fuller: Measuring Seismic Activity in Lake Michigan
  • Melissa La Chance: Analyzing the Acoustic Properties of the Modern Saxophone
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