Spring 2013- PHY287

Dr. Noé has been teaching a WSE187: Introduction to Research rotation for a number of years and has been associated with WISE at both the collegiate and secondary-education level. When I applied to Stony Brook, Dr. Noé saw my application to the WISE program and felt that I was a good candidate for Stony Brook. In the end, Dr. Noé convinced me that Stony Brook was a the right school for me; I decided to join the Honors College, rather than WISE though. This decision meant that I would not be able to do research in the LTC as part of WSE187. I was still interested in doing research in the LTC though and so I contacted Dr. Noé and he offered to let me join his WSE187 group, but take the class for PHY287 credit.

The research project I did for PHY287 focused on the albedo of snow and other diffusely-reflecting surfaces. I first became interested in the topic when we measured the albedo of snow and found it to be much lower [R=30%] than would be expected based on the 'blinding' brightness of the snow. Through my research, I discovered that our measurement was an anomaly and that the literature values for the albedo of snow tended to be much higher [R=40-90%] than the value we had measured. I sought to understand the physics behind albedo [with a specific interest in the properties that affect snow's albedo], the product is my research project.