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Careers: Physics/Particle Physics


I am very interested in particle physics.Right now,I am pursuing    B Tech Chemical Engineering in India.I want to know about the possible options i have to pursue a career in future related to particle physics.Is Nuclear engineering related to particle physics?
Is it possible for me to do a MS degree in Nuclear engineering and then a Ph.D. in Particle physics?
Thank you for your time.

Dear Sanjuna.

Nuclear engineering is not closely related to particle physics.  If you wish to move into particle physics, you should do it right after the BTech if possible by getting a Masters in physics.  If you are unable to enter a physics program immediately the nuclear engineering is probably as good as any, but you must be aware that you will likely be asked to start with a M.S. in physics before moving to a PhD program.  As an engineering major, you are missing a number of core competencies in physics.  These include quantum theory, electrodynamics, and classical dynamics.

Good luck!

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Carlo Segre


I can answer most questions about studying physics in college and graduate school; questions about condensed matter physics; x-ray physics; synchrotron radiation; and general and modern physics. I can also answer questions about careers in academia.


Professor of physics for 30 years at Illinois Institute of Technology. Academic adviser for undergraduates and graduate students. I have served on university promotion and tenure committees, search committees for Deans and Department Chairs. I have also been an Associate Department Chair and an Associate Dean. I have 34 years experience in materials science research and I have been responsible for building and now managing a User facility at the Advanced Photon Source.

American Physical Society
Sigma Xi
American Chemical Society
American Associate for the Advancement of Science
International Centre for Diffraction Data (Fellow)
International X-ray Absorption Society

Nature; Physical Review Letters; Physical Review; Applied Physics Letters; Journal of Physical Chemistry; Journal of Magnetism and Magnetic Materials; Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics; Solid State Communications; Physics Letters; Journal of Low Temperature Physics; Journal of Crystal Growth and Design; Physics Letters; Journal of Applied Physics; Journal of Archaeological Science; Physica C; Corrosion Science; Electrochimica Acta; Journal of Nuclear Materials

Ph.D. Physics, 1981 - University of California, San Diego
M.S. Physics, 1977 - University of California, San Diego
B.S. Physics, 1976 - University of illinois, Champaign-Urbana
B.S. Chemistry 1976 - University of illinois, Champaign-Urbana

Awards and Honors
Duchossois Leadership Professor of Physics, IIT Fellow, International Center for Diffraction Data

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