Physics doctoral student Cody Wiggins, whose work was being done as a nuclear engineering graduate research assistant, recently received two awards from the American Nuclear Society (ANS) for his efforts under Professor Art Ruggles on the development of new methods for positron emission particle tracking (PEPT). PEPT is a radiotracer-based particle tracking technique that is based on the detection of the gamma rays created by positron-electron annihilation, the same physical principle used in positron emission tomography (PET), the medical imaging technique.
The first award was from the Young Members Group of the ANS, which hosted a Pitch Your PhD competition in which contestants had to captivate an audience with their research thesis in a three-minute overview. The second award was given for the Young Professionals Thermal Hydraulics Research Competition, which was a competition for the best summary and presentation among young members of the Thermal Hydraulics division of the ANS.
While the Pitch Your PhD talk was a short overview of this research, he was able to discuss the research with more depth in his Thermal Hydraulics talk, which focused on his measurements in pipe flow and how he was able to recreate mean velocity and higher order velocity statistics (of interest to turbulence modeling) in a pipe as well as information on fluid acceleration and material transport.