I am a senior in the InSTAR research program. During the past year, the development of Optical Tweezers has
come to my attention and I have spent innumerable hours trying to understand how they work. My latest work involves the collimation of the diode laser (approximate wavelength: 780 nm), which has proved much more difficult than previously projected. The beam emerges from the laser cavity as an ellipse but parallel to a degree; however, optimal conditions for trapping occurrs when the rays are absolutely
parallel and spherical in shape (totally filling the microscope objective). These goals are achieved by painstaking manipulation of the laser tweezer setup that tests mechanical skill, optical literacy and (most of all,) patience.
One of the earliest science projects I ever researched involved the effects of biodegradable and non-biodegradable soaps on plants. My
findings concluded that non-biodegradable soaps have an adverse effect on the health of a controlled species while the biodegradable soaps are
actually salubrious to the conditions of certain plants. For the next five years, I kept my interest in science alive through
participation in Science Olympiad, medaling in regional and state competitions and competing in the national competition, as well as
presenting projects on topics ranging from Gaussian distribution, Computer encryption systems to neurology to my research circle in school.
When I am not in the physics building, I can often be found playing the violin in the SUNY Undergraduate Orchestra, or in the pre-college division. I can also be found on campus in the Chemistry building or in the French Department. During the school year, I
compete in Girls Saber Fencing for Ward Melville's Varsity team (which has yet to suffer a loss from any other school on the island). Weekends
bring me into the city, where I am a first violin in the New York Youth Orchestra, now in its 40th season.
Where to Find Me:
8. BC GYM
9. A GE