Nina Abramzon

Nina Abramzon

Professor, Physics and Astronomy, College of Science


Plasma Application Research
  I study the effects of atmospheric pressure plasmas on surface modification. The applications of the surface treatment work studied in the our lab include biofilm growth prevention, enhancement of the binding of antibodies to glass surfaces, and reduction of bone cement failure. I use optical emission spectroscopy to study different plasma characteristics, such as composition and temperature in order to understand the mechanisms beyond the plasma process. I collaborate on these projects with faculty from Biology, Physics and Material Science. Some of the instruments in the lab include three SURFX atmospheric pressure plasma reactors and various spectrometers including Optics spectrometers HR 4000 Ocean and an Acton SP2156 Spectrometer with PIXIS100 CCD detector.



Physic Education and Outreach

  • Research experience through the curriculum project: evaluating the benefits of providing research experience to students as part of the curriculum in the lab courses for undergraduate physics majors including the use of state-of-the-art equipment, scientific writing, and peer review. Because of the expense and amount of faculty time required to support student research many physics students will not have the opportunity to work under a mentor on original research as undergraduates. However, many of the key elements that make undergraduate research a valuable learning experience can be incorporated into courses that are part of the standard undergraduate curriculum, making the benefits of research experience available to a broader base of students. My goal is to find effective elements from research that can be introduced throughout the curriculum, these elements include working with state of the art spectroscopy equipment, writing professional journal style papers that are reviewed by peers and the instructor, and giving a research presentation. This work includes my recent work on the Achieve Scholars Project, through which in collaboration with other faculty I am developing and piloting a sophomore level early career research course that aims at starting research training early as well as experiments for the Advance Lab.

  • Affirmation and Utility Value Intervention: Values affirmation and Utility Value are interventions to boost outcomes for underrepresented undergraduate students in STEM. This project is done in collaboration with faculty in Social Psychology and Philosophy.
  • Women in Physics: STEM Identity study examining physics identity and gender on achievement and well-being outcomes. This project is done in collaboration with faculty in Social Psychology and Philosophy.

  • Improving the Attitude of Pre-service Elementary School Teachers towards Teaching Physics: evaluating an approach to change negative attitude of Pre-service Teachers towards physics by demonstrating the relevance of science teaching to the students in the course for pre-service elementary school teachers.