Dr. Meng-Ru Wu
Area of research: Neutrino physics in astrophysical environment.
Name of my University / Research Institute: I did my PhD at the University of Minnesota
Research period at the TU Darmstadt:
January, 2013 – December, 2014
Questionnaire to the Research Fellow
My field of research is fascinating. To laymen I would explain it in the following comprehensible manner:
My field of research is fascinating because despite neutrinos being such weakly-interacting particles, they play pivotal roles in various aspects in astrophysical environments. For example, every second our bodies are traversed by 300,000 billion neutrinos coming from our Sun. We can observe these neutrinos in huge detectors containing thousands of tons of water and learn about the processes responsible for the production of energy in stars and the fundamental properties of neutrinos. Even more fascinating, during a supernova explosion which signify the death of a massive star, neutrinos are key to transport the energy needed to drive the explosion and they also have strong impact on the formation of Elements. Fluorine and half of the elements heavier than Iron, including Gold and Platinum, are synthesized by reactions driven by the presence of large amounts of neutrinos.
My most important success in research to date is…
the development of new tools to understand the phenomena of neutrino oscillations in supernovae and its impact on nucleosynthesis and neutrino detection on Earth.
I’ve chosen the TU Darmstadt because of…
Prof. Dr. Gabriel Martínez-Pinedo's group's excellence in this field and their strong collaboration with many other groups.
If I were a student today, I would…
like to enjoy physics and life as I have done so far.
The perfect balance to a stressful working day is…
to have a relaxed dinner with my family and friends.
With the help of my host in Darmstadt I would like to…
continuously improve our understanding of this field, to exchange and learn new ideas of related physics.
Questionnaire for the host
Guest of: Prof. Dr. Gabriel Martínez-Pinedo
Department: Institut für Kernphysik, Theoretical Nuclear Astrophysics
You appreciate in your guest / your guest favourably impressed you by…
his broad knowledge of neutrino physics and astrophysics
You, your team and the TU Darmstadt benefit from your guest’s…
One of the research activities in our team is related to the nucleosynthesis of elements in Supernova explosions. During the explosion large amount of neutrinos are produced that can even be detected on Earth like in the case of Supernova 1987A that exploded in February 1987. The expertise of Dr. Wu will complement our work on the impact of neutrinos on the nucleosynthesis of elements and contribute to develop the tools necessary to interpret a future detection of supernova neutrinos. This is particularly important to improve our understanding of the supernova explosion mechanism and the basic properties of the neutrino.