Research Scientist at MIT’s Plasma Fusion Center 1984-87. Assistant and Associate Professor in MIT’s Physics Department 1987-95. Professor of Physics and Faculty Senior Scientist at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory 1995.
Jonathan Wurtele received his B.A. (Physics and Mathematics) in 1979 and his Ph.D. (Physics) in 1985 from UC Berkeley. He was a Research Scientist at MIT’s Plasma Fusion Center (1984-87) and Assistant and Associate Professor in MIT’s Physics Department (1987-95). He returned to Berkeley in 1995, where he is now Professor of Physics and Faculty Senior Scientist at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. A Fellow of the American Physical Society and has been a Foreign Research Fellow at the Institute of Space and Astronautical Science (Japan). He shared the John Dawson Award for Excellence in Plasma Physics Research (2011). He is a Member of the ALPHA (Antihydrogen Laser Physics Apparatus) Collaboration, which reported the first trapping of neutral antimatter in 2010, and the Berkeley Earth Surface Temperature Study.
Neutral antimatter physics: I am a member of the Antihydrogen Laser Physics Apparatus (ALPHA) collaboration, whose goal is to conduct fundamental studies of matter-antimatter asymmetry. Our experiment used antiprotons from the Antiproton Decelerator at CERN. Until our recent successes with the current ALPHA apparatus, no group had ever trapped neutral antimatter. We have (as of 2011) synthesized and trapped hundreds of antiatoms, with confinement time of anti-atoms from 0.17s to 1000s. We are currently rebuilding our apparatus; the new apparatus should be commissioned in 2014. Students and postdocs in my group focus on the beam and plasma theory and simulation related to the trapping and synthesizing of antihydrogen. Examples of this work are the development of a Vlasov simulation to model the mixing of antiprotons and positrons and analyzing frictional cooling as a method to increase antiproton flux. More recently, we have been studying the dynamics of, and envisioning new experiments with, antihydrogen.
Berkeley Earth Surface Temperature Study: The goal of our study is to provide a new, independent, open estimate of the surface temperature changes during the instrumental record. The study, which has, to date, included land stations only, aims to incorporate as much of the available data as possible, to provide all the raw and quality controlled data online, along with the codes used to generate the analysis, and to provide a temperature analysis along with an error estimate. In the near future we will integrate ocean data to obtain a global temperature record.