You are here

Pappalardo Fellow Or Hen wins Israel Physical Society graduate research prize
MIT NEWS OFFICE, Pappalardo Fellow Or Hen wins Israel Physical Society graduate research prize, Dec 28, 2015

The Israel Physical Society (IPS) has awarded its 2015 IPS Prize for a Graduate Student in Experimental Physics to Or Hen, a 2015-2018 Pappalardo Fellow in Physics at MIT. Hen received the IPS honor for "his achievements in the area of high-energy nuclear physics."

In his PhD work at Tel-Aviv University, Hen and collaborators conducted experiments at the U.S. Jefferson National Accelerator Laboratory, studying the characteristics of short-range correlations (SRC) pairs in light and heavy nuclei. SRC pairs account for almost all high-momentum nucleon in nuclei and constitute 20-25 percent of the nuclear wave-function.

Hen’s group examined the effect of SRCs on an array of topics in astophysics and nuclear, particle, and atomic physics, showing that SRCs in atomic nuclei are predominantly neutron-proton pairs. This has significant implications in several areas of physics, including nuclear symmetry energy and neutron star structure; quark distributions in nuclei (the “EMC effect”); free (unbound) neutron structure; energy sharing, as well as correlations in ultra-cold two-component Fermi gases in atomic physics.

Hen, who began his postdoctoral fellowship at MIT this fall, is a member of the Hadronic Physics Group at the MIT Laboratory for Nuclear Science. He will continue studying short-range correlations in nuclei, and will also develop and construct large-scale fast neutron detectors and perform experimental tests of the standard model of particle physics at low energies.