Founding Principle Investigator


Dr. Timothy Koeth is currently an Assistant Research Professor at the University of Maryland's Institure for Research in Electronics and Applied Physics working with the University of Maryland's space charge dominated 10 keV Electron Storage Ring (UMER). Additionally, he is a Guest Scientist at Rutgers University. Timothy earned both his Ph.D. and B.S. degrees in Physics at Rutgers University. His thesis work in electron beam manipulations (a horizontal to longitudinal emittance exchange) was carried out at Fermi National Accelerator Lab's A0 Photoinjector under the supervision of Dr. Helen Edwards.

Timothy has always had a deep interest in the physical sciences which has led him to many great experiences. From attempting simple photon-photon scattering experiments at age 5, to discovering 100 millicuries of lost Radium-226 at age 13, earning an amateur radio license soon after, earning a B.S. in Physics, working as a health physicist, building a 1.2 MeV cyclotron, to earning a Ph.D. in Accelerator Physics, Tim Koeth is always involved in some sort of academic pursuit.

The "Rutgers 12-inch Cyclotron" was inspired by Prof. Tom Devlin's Sophomore Modern Physics lecture. Tim recognized the elegance of the cyclotron principle and had to demonstrate it for himself. He approached his best friend Stu Hanebuth about the idea of building a small cyclotron together. This has been a very successful collaboration.

Originally the cyclotron was to be a fleeting experiment, but as it took shape both Tim and Stu recognized that, from its unique offering, the cyclotron should be used as a teaching tool. With that in mind, the 12-inch was designed for student use as well as student involvement in the upgrade's final touches. Ultimately, it has been very rewarding to Tim to see the cyclotron attract other full-time RU employees, talented visitors, and most importantly to have so many students interested in accelerator science. Tim Koeth has devoted his life to research and education. "There are just some questions that keep me up all night," says Koeth, "and I will do my best to answer them, or enable others to help answer them for me."

More can be learned about Tim Koeth at his web page.


Rutgers Cyclotron Co-PI


Stuart Hanebuth, known to his friends and associates as Stu, was born and raised in Minnesota and fondly recalls spending summers on the farm and fishing in one of the ten-thousand lakes. He graduated from Rutgers University, Cook College in 1995 with a B.S. in Environmental Science. According to Stu he was attracted to Environmental Science because, "It was the only degree that allowed a chemist to work in a biology lab studying physics." Stu has always been fascinated by how things are put together and how they interact with one and other, from a very young age nothing assembled with screws and nuts were safe. Stu's Mother often retells the story of how, at the age of 4, Stu disassembled to garage door and rigged it to fall on his father's new car when the door was opened; for the record Stu says that there was a, "design flaw which resulted in the door's unfortunate collapse." As soon as Stu was old enough to earn an allowance he would make his mother drive him to Ax-Man , a local surplus store, so that he could by "good junk"which he used to build a variety of projects.

While at Rutgers Stu met Tim Koeth while selling Geiger counters on the internet, the two quickly became friends. Tim encouraged Stu to get his Ham Radio License and the two quickly achieved notability in the field by conducting the highest frequency QSO ever recorded. The two met regularly at the Rutgers University Surplus Store looking for any items that they could add to their collection of the odd and unique. Tim and Stu even teamed up to study the bioremediation of radium contaminated soil in Northern New Jersey. The two planted a variety of vegetables in the contaminated soil and measured the uptake of the radium.

Immediately after graduation Stu took a job working for an environmental remediation firm based in Massachusetts, where he worked on The TWA Flight 800 Response in Moriches Long Island, The Julie-N spill in Portland Maine along with countless smaller oil spills and chemical responses. According to Stu this was his first dream job, "I always wanted to work with hazardous materials, I got my first respirator at the age of 10!" From the field Stu moved into environmental, health and safety training traveling around the country to deliver training for a variety of companies. "This was my second dream job, I got to go into all kinds of plants and factories and see how they work, and they paid me for it," Hanebuth reports. Then one November afternoon, while he was training a class on the proper transportation of hazardous waste, "When I got my third dream job," working for a major New York Energy Utility where he is now a maintenance manager in substation operations.

Stu describes himself as a hands-on scientist, "When Tim first proposed the cyclotron I saw it as an opportunity to create a hands-on particle physics learning experience, what I didn't know is that we were going to spend most of the first three years looking in dumpsters for parts." It didn't take long for the project to grow and for the team to realize the potential for this cyclotron to be used as a learning tool. According to Stu the cyclotron has offered more learning experience for him than he had ever imagined; "In addition to learning about the physics behind the cyclotron, we have had to teach ourselves about software development, fabrication, project management and technical writing." While he readily admits that the cyclotron has been pieced together from surplus parts he proudly defends the machine, and the opportunity it offers for students to operate a real accelerator. When asked why he is so passionate about the cyclotron Stu said,"I have always been inspired by teachers that are passionate about what they teach, I see this as my opportunity to inspire young people to explore the world around them."


Instrument Maker for Rutgers Physics Machine Shop


Heavily influenced by his grandfather, Bill Schneider began his machining career in 1979 two years before graduating from Edison high school of New Jersey. Bill's grandfather worked as a toolmaker for Mack Trucks in New Brunswick, New Jersey for over 40 years and became supervisor for the transmission and rear differential division. Growing up as a child, Bill has heard many stories of the days when machines were powered by long belt driven shafts that ran along the ceilings of the machine shops during that time. An interest and desire to make things out of metal was soon to become a reality once he got his hands on his first micrometer when he was in the sixth grade. "I was measuring EVERYTHING with that thing and even used to carry it to school" Bill said. After graduating high school, Bill worked full time in a production shop sometimes making hundreds or even thousands of parts taking few years time. "One has to pay his dues at the bottom if he wants to do the good stuff someday." Pay his dues, he did. "I always thought that I wanted to become an engineer" Bill said. He then enrolled as a part-time mechanical engineering student at Middlesex County College in Edison, New Jersey and worked full-time machining. After working many years in the field of production, he then took a position at a local machine tool manufacturer making ultra high precision reamers and gun boring tools. Even after acquiring over 60 credits from the county college, Bill still had the desire to continue working with his hands, mind and talent he developed over the years. Two years later in 1986, Bill was offered a position as a lab technician for the Rutgers University Physics department. He took the job even though the pay was a little less than what he was making at the time. Bill thought that this would be a great opportunity to do the type of work he always desired. His responsibility for the first year and a half at Rutgers was divided in half by having the responsibility to maintain and operate the helium liquefier and the machining of laboratory instrumentation. With a large project from SLAC on its way into the physics machine shop, Bill was upgraded to Instrument maker. A CNC machining center and computer with CAD/CAM was purchased for the production of the SLAC components and Bill had become the person responsible for the programming, setup and operation of the new automated system. Bill states "The parts that I had made on that system vary from Box coring devices used on the Alvin submersible to the PFIS structure for SALT(south Africa large telescope) and just about everything in between." As the years roll by, people come and people go throughout the University. Some good people and some that, well, just won't be missed. Then we have Tim Koeth, a fascinating individual. Bill and Tim met in the electronics lab and over time they became good friends. Not just in the laboratory but outside as well. Sometimes going to the beach or even doing a little bit of photography, but most of the time was in the lab doing science and thinking of new and exciting new ways to make a diffenence in the world of science. "Tim is an incredible asset to the physics department with a perpetual drive for science and his cyclotron." Bill says. "Event though cyclotron's have been built around the world, Tim's is special." Bill states. "With this being Tim's creation, he had become a great manager for the cyclotron. There is a small handful of people involved in the project and he always seemed to know how to get everyone to work together."



Engineer for Princeton University's Physics Department


Since I can remember I was taking things apart, in high school I became productive by receiving my amateur radio license and the knowledge of hamfests. I quickly filled my parents basement, garage, shed, my bedroom, and brother's bedroom with electronics and mechanical equipment. Shortly thereafter I left for Drexel University for my Computer Science degree, which was intended to help bridge the gap between software and hardware. The benefit of that degree was the coop program where I applied for a summer job at the Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory, where I got the interview thanks to my amateur radio license. There I worked on the Current Drive Experiment-Upgrade, worked with several technicians and physicists with a combined total of several centuries of experience. They taught me all about plasma physics, tokamaks, and were happy to answer all my questions and teach me all about their research. I was enlightened on so much good stuff: vacuum, high power rf systems, high current dc power supplies, plasma diagnostics, tokamaks, and the most important, the knob only goes to the right. After I graduated they hired me on full time. There was a lot of versatility in the job where I was able to work on Thomson Scattering Systems, Lithium evaporation and sputtering systems, continued on helping with CDX-U, and even some computer programming. I enjoyed the work so much, I started to bring it home. I kept my eye out for vacuum equipment at hamfests, and found there is a lot of equipment that shows up there. My first project was a rotamak, which is a plasma confined by rotating magnetic fields generated by rf. So I collected everything but a decent vacuum chamber. I was speaking to my friend about it and he told me to speak to Tim Koeth. Tim who is always interested in projects done outside the university quickly delivered a chamber. He then asked if I would like to help with the cyclotron. Since it was making much greater progress then my rotamak, I helped as much as I could. The cyclotron introduced me to more physics, I was able to put my vacuum experience from plasma physics towards the cyclotron. It has been a lot of fun helping with the cyclotron, getting together in the evenings to do something creative. There is a lot of enjoyment in having to scrounge hardware and materials to make it. To me there is nothing better than working on a project that has no budget. It made it more challenging and rewarding to see it in operation. Currently I am working for the physics department at Princeton University. I have moved from the high magnetic fields of the cyclotron and tokamak to femtotesla magnetometers for brain imaging. Evenings are still spent working on new ideas and planning future projects. The cyclotron is proof, you donít need funding to build a experiment. The craftsmanship of the cyclotron is incredible! It is amazing that something like that can be built by a bunch of kids, and maybe other young students will come up with projects that they want to build, and know they can do it.


Staff Member of Rutgers Computer Science Department


Douglas Motto is currently working for the Laboratory of Computer Science Research at Rutgers University as a Computer System Administrator and Programmer. This department directly supports the needs of the Computer Science Department at Rutgers University. Douglas Motto graduated from Rutgers University in 2001 with a Bachelor's Degree in Computer and Electrical Engineering. He is currently pursuing his second undergraduate degree in Physics. While taking a Nuclei and Particle Physics course taught by Tom Devlin he questioned his professor whether it would be fruitful for a student to built one's own particle accelerator and whether the professor would be willing to give advice on such a task. Tom introduced him to Tim Koeth which surprisingly had the same idea years before.


Owner of JK Electric


Jimbo will give me words about himself for here


IBA Cyclotron Engineer


Tim Ponter, the professional cyclotron Engineer, will give me words about himself for here


(In order of appearance.)


Rutgers Physics Student


Kent Horvath is currently an undergraduate at Rutgers University completing a major in Physics and in Philosophy. His participation with the cyclotron has come in several forms: machine shop work, assistance in electronics, theoretical work on the paths of the ions, and developing several animations of the cyclotron itself. Kent says "the small number of people involved, and the large number of projects to be completed" has allowed him to exercise several of his many interests. Outside of the cyclotron work, he has been involved in several projects with Rutgers' Physics professor Steve Schnetzer. First was with Schnetzer's Rutgers Diamond Group, whose aim was to replace silicon with CVD diamond for use in very harsh radiation environments. This research brought Kent to the CERN accelerator lab near Geneva Switzerland. Kent also worked with Prof. Schnetzer on the study of high energy cosmic rays in the HiRes collaboration. Recently, Kent has been involved in computational analysis for research ongoing at Brookhaven National Labatory under the supervision of Rutgers' Professor Mark Croft. Still considering his options, Kent Horvath suspects he will pursue a career utilizing his scientific training in either education or law.


Rutgers Physics Student


I'm Carolyn Chun, a Rutgers alumna. I majored in physics and mathematics, graduating in 2002, and am currently working on a Ph. D. in mathematics at Louisiana State University as a Board of Regents Fellow, not to mention the MFA in creative writing I'm working on after hours. I've been interested in physics my whole life, but I've been interested in lots of things my whole life. Music, math, physics, creative writing, and sports are just a few life-long passions that I've been able to pursue, striving in all things to do as unto the Lord. I began working with the Rutgers high-energy physics group (Tim's group) in the summer of 1999, right after my freshman year at RU, and got hooked. I worked at an REU (research experience for undergraduates) at CERN in Geneva, Switzerland the summer of 2001, in conjunction with the Rutgers group, and returned home to discover my good friend Tim had built a cyclotron with his friend Stu. Liam and I worked up some schematics for some magnet shims to allow us to manually adjust the magnetic field of the cyclotron magnet. What I learned from Tim's and Stu's cyclotron was more than the old addage, "where there's a will, there's a way," though Tim confirms this again and again. I learned that Tim has much too much free time. I learned that even very, very difficult projects will probably appeal to someone out there. I learned that I can just go ahead and do whatever it is I'm good at and hope something will come of it someday. I'm imagining a tee shirt design based on Tim and Stu that goes, "Build your own cyclotron." To me, it means that I shouldn't waste my time, that I should do what I think is productive, even if my "cyclotron" never gets noticed by anyone else, even if my "cyclotron" isn't getting anyone else anywhere. So, thank you, Tim and Stu. Thanks from the bottom of my heart. And that's as deep as I get.


Rutgers Physics Student


Liam worked with the High-Energy Experimentalists (HEX) group from 1999-2000 and from 2001-2003. In addition to working with Tim Koeth and Carolyn Chun on the cyclotron, he assisted Drs. Conway and Schnetzer in an R&D project for the Large Hadron Collider being built at CERN, which included beam tests at CERN and Fermilab. When he returned to the department (after a woeful hiatus from physics research working in the realm of computer science) to work with Dr. Thomson, Liam did data analysis work for the HiRes project, looking for ultra-high energy cosmic rays. The cyclotron was a welcome experience in lower-energy high energy physics.

Liam is currently pursuing an Ed.M. degree in Secondary School Physical Science Teaching at the Rutgers Graduate School of Education, and has hopes of involving his future high school students in the cyclotron project.


Rutgers Physics Students



Rutgers Physics Student


I'm currently a student at Rutgers University, in my last undergraduate semester. I became interested in science and math at a very early age, and as a kid I remember getting up hours before school in order to watch science shows on television, and spending many hours in libraries reading more about math and physics. In high school I continued trying to learn as much as possible, and participated in various math and physics clubs. The cyclotron was my first real exposure to a project in progress and I've learned a great deal from it. I've constantly been amazed at the ingenuity and flexibility of Tim and everyone else involved in the project. It's also been very interesting to see exactly what's required for the planning, research, and execution of various tasks involving the cyclotron's construction and refinement. Currently I'm involved in designing a 2 dimensional positioning device in order to map out the magnetic field in the cyclotron to check for any irregularities which may be affecting the beam. The cyclotron makes me appreciate just how far hard work and creativity can go in accomplishing a goal. It's also been very rewarding to utilize knowledge from books and lectures in such a hands-on way.


Rutgers Physics Student


Doug Cahl is currently in his last semester at Rutgers University, where he is an undergraduate student studying Physics. Although his involvement with the cyclotron, which began during one of his lab classes in Spring, 2004, is his first experience in this type of project, he has always been interested in the opportunity to apply the theories he has learned in lectures and is very excited to be working with Tim. Doug has been hands on in the designing of a 2-dimensional computer controlled slider with a measuring device attached, which will be used to map out the current magnetic field of the new 12inch magnet. The purpose of the map is aide in the design of new pole pieces to shape the field so it is symmetric once again. "I have learned a great deal about the effort and time that goes into making accelerators like this one." Doug has said many times to Tim


Rutgers Physics Student


Tim Ponter, the student, will give me words about himself for here


Hunter College High School Student

Heidi (2010)

Heidi will give me words about herself for here

AKG - Aaron, Kiersten, and George

Rutgers Physics Students

L-R George, Kiersten, and Aaron (2011)

Aaron Rosenberg is in the graduation class of 2012 where he is majoring in physics. Aaron first became involved with the Rutgers cyclotron when he and his then lab partners, Kiersten Ruisard and George Hine, enrolled in the modern physics lab where Tim was generous enough to let the three work exclusively on the cyclotron. During that semester, the Aaron, Kiersten and George designed, simulated and tested AVF pole tips while becoming even closer as friends. In addition to helping with the Rutgers cyclotron, Aaron is conducting research with Dr. Misha Gershenson in applied superconductivity. With numerous interests and career options available, Aaron is considering pursing graduate study in beam physics, superconductivity or semiconductor devices.

KierstenKiersten is a physics major in the graduating class of 2012. She became involved in the cyclotron project as a junior, along with her lab partners George and Aaron. Kiersten helped design spiral-shaped AVF pole tips for the 12-inch cyclotron, modeling the magnetic fields and assisting in making magnetic field measurements. As a result of her work with the cyclotron, she spent the following summer at the University of Maryland, working with Tim to design and model an extraction section for the University of Maryland Electron Ring(UMER). Kiersten has also explored the fields observational astronomy and gravitational wave research during her undergraduate career, and is keeping super secret about which field of physics she will be pursuing for graduate studies. When not keeping up with physics, Kiersten enjoys dancing, horseback riding and being an art school dropout.

George Hine After completing his chemical engineering degree in 2010, George decided to spend another year at Rutgers to get a B.S. in physics to prepare for a physics Ph.D. program. In this time, he worked with Kiersten Ruisard and Aaron Rosenberg designing spiral azimuthally varying field (AVF) magnetic pole tips. During the development of the Spiral AVF.s, George specialized in design, drafting, and 3D modelling, using Solidworks software. Kiersten and Aaron ran coupled theoretical simulations and their input was used to improve George.s tip design. The iterative and cooperative nature of the project fostered a strong friendship between the three students. The experience with the cyclotron had such a strong impact on George that he changed his original research plans to pursue intense laser-matter interactions and their applications to accelerators under Prof. Howard Milchberg in the University of Maryland. He began pursuing his Ph.D. program there in June 2011.

The AKG unit (2011)

Mephare, Helen, Dan, and Brian

Rutgers Physics Students

CW from top: Tim P, Helen, Dan, Brian, Mephare (2012)

In 2012 we tried an experiment where the cyclotron was used as one of the 'canned' modern physics experiments. The students spent five weeks learning about the cyclotron and how to operate it. They measured operating parameters of the magnetic resonance acceleration. Because of the several week-long learning curve in just operating, we decided to maintain our traditional semester long commitment. Brian, Helen, Mehpare, and Dan did very will within their limited time with the cyclotron.

Julia, Sean, and Stoyan

Rutgers Physics Students

L-R Tim P, Stoyan, Tim K., Julia, Stoyan, and Jim K. (2013)

Julia Gonski will tell me more about herself for here.

Sean Burcher will tell me more about himself for here

Stoyan Lazarov will tell me more about himself for here

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