Ten students from West Virginia University have been given a launch from NASA for the 2004-05 academic year, University officials announced.

The students, all from WVU s Eberly College of Arts and Sciences, are recipients of NASA s Space Grant Scholarships, which encourage students interested in math and science to pursue careers in research.

All monies are administered through the NASA West Virginia Space Grant Consortium.

This years recipients:

  • Jonas Anderson, Cleveland, W.Va., physics and computer engineering
  • Nicole Dorinzi, Morgantown, physics
  • Joshua Gesner, Lewisburg, physics
  • Andy Koepke, Morgantown, physics and statistics
  • Matt Koepke, Morgantown, physics and mathematics
  • Jennifer Maloney, Wellsburg, geology
  • John Martin, McMechen, chemistry
  • Rebecca McCauley, Grafton, biology
  • Ryan Murphy, Philippi, physics
  • Hasan Shahid, Charleston, biology

The Consortium is made up of five universities and seven colleges and was established in August 1991.

WVU is the lead institution, and the Consortium is housed in the College of Engineering and Mineral Resources, on the Evansdale campus.

Since 1997, WVU s Eberly College has matched Consortium dollars to award up to eight scholarships annually to students majoring in an arts and sciences discipline who are working on a science-related project with a faculty mentor.

For more information, please contact Dr. Majid Jaraiedi, Director of the NASA West Virginia Space Grant Consortium, at 304-293-4099, ext. 3708. His email is: majid.jaraiedi@mail.wvu.edu .

Here are brief capsules of the scholarship recipients and their research:

Ryan Murphy is a sophomore physics major working under the direction of Dr. Earl Scime. His research focuses on absorption spectroscopy of helium ions in a helicon plasma source. Plasma is scientifically recognized as the fourth state of matter.

Jennifer Maloney is a senior geology major working under the direction of Dr. Helen Lang and is focused on cathodoluminescence identification of the amblygonite-montebrasite mineral series. Her research is currently being undertaken at the

Smithsonian Institution National Museum of Natural History in Washington, D.C., where shes collaborating there Dr. Michael Wise. WVU s Dr. Lang will help Maloney analyze and interpret all data collected.

Joshua Gesner is a senior physics major working under the direction of Dr. Scime, in the field of plasma physics. Gesners research focuses on particle image velocimetry applied todustyplasma. The long-range goal is to improve dust-charging models for the astrophysics and basic-plasma communities, who will then use the models in future observations.

Hasan Shahid is a senior biology major working under the direction His research is being conducted under the supervision of Dr. Jaraiedi. Shahid is working on the application of denaturing gradient gel electrophoreses (DGGE) to profile the microbial community in forested floodplains of the Southeast.

John Martin is a senior chemistry major working under the direction of Dr. Charles Jaffe. His research explores the dynamics of anti-hydrogen in strong electric fields.

Andy Koepke is a freshman physics and statistics major working under the direction of Dr. Mark Koepke. His research explores the effect of the turning point location in magnetospheric-electron bounce orbits on plasma-wave damping.

Matt Koepke is a freshman physics and math major working under the direction of Dr. David Lederman. Hes researching the fabrication of magnetic tunneling junctions.

Nicole Dorinzi is a sophomore physics major working under the direction of Dr. Koepke. Shes studying the hydrodynamic stability of membranes subjected to uniform airflow.

Rebecca McCauley is a biology major working under the direction of Dr. Jonathon Cumming. Shes researching the effects of aluminum, cadmium, zinc, and copper on metal resistive and metal intolerant plants.

Jonas Anderson is a physics and computer engineering major working under the direction of Dr. Martina Bachlechner. His research includes a detailed analysis of molecular-dynamics simulations.