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Lecture on usage of hydrogen in today’s economic environment

8/30/2007 —

Dr. Robert Forrey, professor of Physics at Penn State Berks, will present Quantum Mechanics of Hydrogen:  Applications in Astrophysics, Ultracold Physics, and the Hydrogen Fuel Economy as part of the 2007-2008 Faculty Lecture Series. The lecture will be held at 12 noon on Thursday, September 20, in the Atrium at Penn State Lehigh Valley in Fogelsville.  The lecture is open to the public and free of charge.

Forrey received his Ph.D. in Physics from University of Delaware in 1995, and a master’s degree from the same university in 1991.  He holds a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from Lafayette College.  He was a post-doctoral research associate at Harvard University between 1995 and 1999.  Forrey has been successful in attracting over a half-million dollars in external funding for his research and is currently supported by NSF and NASA grants. He has over 50 refereed journal publications.  He joined Penn State University in 1999 and was recipient of the Penn State Berks outstanding research award in 2004.  

His talk will address what would appear to be totally unrelated realms in astrophysics, ultracold physics, and the hydrogen fuel economy. Although hydrogen is the most abundant and simplest element in the Universe, its simplicity is deceptive. While it is true that the quantum mechanics of a hydrogen atom or molecule may be easily understood in isolation, it is not the case when hydrogen interacts with neighboring atoms, molecules, clusters, and surfaces. Forrey will discuss the complex environments, such as near a cluster or surface, hydrogen interactions that may lead to a detailed chemistry that needs to be properly understood. He will also look at how improved mathematical models gain a better understanding of hydrogen interactions in a variety of environments which can be significant for both fundamental and applied science.

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