Dr. Javier Hasbun received his Ph.D. from the State University of New York at Albany in 1987. His research area is in solid state physics and has written two textbooks, one in classical mechanics and the other in computational physics. he also collaborates in biophysics research in the area of cardiac muscle contraction. He welcomes students interested in research as well. Those who are interested in performing experimental or practical theoretical work are invited to work with him. Email: jhasbun@westga.edu , Tel:(678) 839-4092.  

Dr. Sterling studies planetary nebulae, the gaseous ejecta of dying low-mass stars (1-8 times the Sun's mass). He uses spectroscopy to study the chemical composition of planetary nebulae, in order to understand how elements are formed in low-mass stars. From observations with 3-8 meter telescopes in the US, Chile, and Spain, he has discovered and analyzed emission lines from some of the rarest elements in the Universe, including germanium, selenium, krypton, rubidium, cadmium, and xenon. In addition to his observational research, Dr. Sterling studies the atomic properties of heavy element ions via state-of-the-art computer calculations and experimental measurements conducted at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. His research is currently funded by an NSF grant to determine the properties of bromine and rubidium ions, as well as several internal grants from UWG.

Dr. Sterling encourages students interested in astronomy or atomic physics to contact him. He is proud to supervise several research students each year, most of whom present research results at state and national conferences and/or travel to state-of-the-art research observatories."

For Grants and Publications:

Funded Grants:

  • NSF Astronomy and Astrophysics Grant: "Expanding the Atomic Database for Nebulae and Stellar Neutron-Capture Element Abundance Determinations," $320,399, August 2014 - July 2017
  • UWG Student Research Assistant Program, "The Chemical Composition of Astrophysical Nebulae," $1700, August 2015 - May 2016
  • UWG Faculty Research Grant, "Heavy Element Abundances in Astrophysical Nebulae," $3200, July 2015 - June 2016
  • UWG Student Research Assistant Program, "Spectroscopic Analysis of Astrophysical Nebulae at Optical and Infrared Wavelengths," $1800, August 2014 - May 2015
  • President's Development Award, "Heavy Elements in Magellanic Cloud Planetary Nebulae," $6606, February 2014 - February 2015
  • UWise Mini-Grant, "Implementing Workshop Instruction in Introductory Physics," $4900, January 2014 - June 2014
  • NSF Astronomy and Astrophysics Postdoctoral Fellowship, "Exploring the Nucleosynthesis of Neutron-Capture Elements Through Nebular Spectroscopy," $249,000, October 2009 - July 2012
  • NASA Astronomy and Physics Research and Analysis Grant, "New Atomic Data for Determining Neutron-Capture Element Abundances in Ionized Nebulae," $153,284, October 2007 - September 2009 (Science Principal Investigator)

Publications since 2015 (Refereed):

  • 4. Sterling, N. C., Dinerstein, H. L., Kaplan, K. F., & Bautista, M. A. 2016, "Discovery of Rubidium, Cadmium, and Germanium Emission Lines in the Near-Infrared Spectra of Planetary Nebulae," Astrophysical Journal Letters, 819, L9
  • 3. Macaluso, D. A., Aguilar, A., Kilcoyne, A. L. D., Red, E. C., Bilodeau, R. C., Phaneuf, R. A., Sterling, N. C., and McLaughlin, B. M. 2015, "Absolute single photoionization cross-sections of Se2+: Experiment and Theory," Physical Review A, 92, 063424
  • 2. García-Rojas, J., Madonna, S., Luridiana, V., Sterling, N. C., Morisset, C., Delgado-Inglada, G., & Toribio San Cipriano, L. 2015, "S-process enrichments in the planetary nebula NGC 3918. Results from deep echelle spectrophotometry," Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, 452, 2606
  • 1. Sterling, N. C., Porter, R. L., & Dinerstein, H. L. 2015, "The Abundances of Light Neutron-Capture Elements in Planetary Nebulae III. The Impact of New Atomic Data on Nebular Selenium and Krypton Abundance Determinations," Astrophysical Journal Supplement Series, 218, 25