The Michigan Engineer News Center

Crystal Green: A warm reception offsets the chilly weather

Crystal Green is working toward getting both her PhD from the top-ranked nuclear engineering department in the country and her Medical Physics Certification.| Short Read
EnlargePortrait of Crystal Green.
IMAGE:  Portrait of Crystal Green. Photo: Joseph Xu, Michigan Engineering, Communications & Marketing

Status: PhD student

Hometown: Augusta, GA

Department: Nuclear Engineering and Radiological Sciences

Crystal Green, NERS Ph.D. candidate, arrived in Ann Arbor in July to attend a summer program. Now she is beginning to understand that the weather in Michigan is vastly different from her native, Augusta, Georgia. “It’s definitely getting chilly,” she says of the early Fall temperatures.

But the looming winter weather aside, Green is thrilled with her new home at the University of Michigan. Having been awarded the Science, Mathematics, and Research for Transformation (SMART) fellowship, she doesn’t have to worry about the cost of the graduate program. During her academic program she will intern for the Army Public Health Command Health Physics division in Aberdeen, Maryland and then work there full time for five years. By that time she will not only have her Ph.D. from the top ranked nuclear engineering department in the country, but will also have her Medical Physics Certification.

“I was always interested in medicine but I didn’t want to be a doctor. My aunt had breast cancer and I became interested in helping to develop treatments using nuclear medical physics,” says Green.

Green was accepted to several other prestigious Ph.D. programs but chose UM because of her warm reception and the fact that she could work with Dr. Kim Kearfott, who will oversee Green’s dissertation research where she will create a design for self reading long-term radiation system based upon integrating dosimetric materials.

“Dr. Kearfott has such a diverse background so I know that I will learn so much from her,” says Green.

Green earned her bachelor’s degree from South Carolina State University graduating Summa Cum Laude. She interned with the Lawrence Livermore National Lab, twice winning first place LLNL Summer Student Poster Symposium for research she conducted at the lab.

Green believes in exercising her body as well as her mind and after lab takes ballet lessons. She enjoys the workout as well as clearing her mind after a long day. She says she likes Ann Arbor a lot but has one concern: “I am going to have to buy a whole new wardrobe!”

Portrait of Crystal Green.
The electrons absorb laser light and set up “momentum combs” (the hills) spanning the energy valleys within the material (the red line). When the electrons have an energy allowed by the quantum mechanical structure of the material—and also touch the edge of the valley—they emit light. This is why some teeth of the combs are bright and some are dark. By measuring the emitted light and precisely locating its source, the research mapped out the energy valleys in a 2D crystal of tungsten diselenide. Credit: Markus Borsch, Quantum Science Theory Lab, University of Michigan.

Mapping quantum structures with light to unlock their capabilities

Rather than installing new “2D” semiconductors in devices to see what they can do, this new method puts them through their paces with lasers and light detectors. | Medium Read