Carl Edward Faust, Ph.D.

Department: Physics

Assistant Professor of Physics

  • Education
  • PHD, Lehigh University
  • MS, Lehigh University
  • BS, Kutztown University of Pennsylvania
  • Specialty
  • Atomic Molecular Physics

From early on in my life I have always enjoyed puzzles and problem solving, so in school I naturally gravitated toward the sciences, specifically physics. For me, studying physics is not only about learning how the physical world works but also about being able to think critically about any sort of problem and break it down into a simple elegant solution.

I believe that some of the richest learning experiences happen outside of the classroom. As a student, I spent a great deal of time developing and building cantaloupe-throwing devices. I have constructed two air cannons and two catapults. At SU, with the help of students, we work on projects like this as often as possible. When I am not trying to make fruit fly, I spend my free time solidifying my proud geek lifestyle with gaming and comics.

Studying and teaching physics in a liberal arts college setting, like SU, is a very rewarding experience. Typical roles of students and teachers are replaced with a community of friends and coworkers. My hope is that I am able to share my passion for physics with my students so that they can reach their own lightbulb moments and be able to develop a new way of looking at the world around them.

My research focus in atomic and molecular laser spectroscopy. I study the interactions between high-lying electronic states of alkali diatomic molecules. Spin-orbit and nonadiabatic interactions result in molecular states described by mixed component wavefunctions. By fitting theoretical simulations to experimental bound-free resolved fluorescence spectra, sensitive information about these interactions can be obtained.

Dynamic collision processes are also studied. When a molecule experiences an inelastic collision with a nearby atom, population and orientation is transferred between nearby energy levels. A combination of laser induced fluorescence and polarization spectroscopy can be used to determine the rates of such processes and how they are affected by the initial conditions and types of atoms taking part in the collisions.

Courses taught:

  • BIOL-250 STEM First-Year Seminar
  • BIOL-450 Advanced STEM Seminar
  • OFFP-NOLA GO New Orleans
  • OFFR-NOLA GO New Orleans
  • OFFS-NOLA GO New Orleans
  • PHYS-100 Introductory Astronomy
  • PHYS-100L Introductory Astronomy Lab
  • PHYS-101 Digital and Analog Electronics
  • PHYS-108 Physics of Music
  • PHYS-201 Introductory Physics I Lab
  • PHYS-202 Introductory Physics I: Algebra-Based
  • PHYS-204 Introductory Physics I: Calculus-Based
  • PHYS-206 Introductory Physics II: Calculus-based
  • PHYS-207 Introductory Physics II Lab
  • PHYS-402 Quantum Mechanics
  • PHYS-405 Mathematical Physics
  • PHYS-500 Independent Study
  • PHYS-550 Physics Research
  • PRDV-104 Perspectives