TRIUMF research scientist Dr. Kenji Kojima has been awarded the Dalhousie University ‘Top Co-op Award’ in the Research and Development category for his supervision of Dalhousie undergraduate and TRIUMF co-op student, Jack deGooyer.
The award, presented annually to just ten co-op supervisors across Canada, highlights Kojima’s contributions as a supervisor for deGooyer, who joined TRIUMF for the spring 2020 term to work on a project to replace traditional photo tubes with Silicon Photo Multipliers in particle detection systems at the beta-NMR/NQR (Nuclear Magnetic Resonance/Nuclear Quadrupole Resonance) and muon facilities at TRIUMF. DeGooyer also tested a newly-developed ASIC (Application Specific Integrated Circuit) for improved detector timing resolution, and assisted in finalizing its design at the KEK research institute in Japan.
Though the necessary beamtime to check the performance of deGooyer’s developments was not available during his stay, Kojima went on to perform the necessary analysis and found that they worked as designed.
“I was really amazed with Jack's knowledge in practical electronics, computing and mechanical design, all of which originates from the high quality of the Canadian Engineering and Science education system," said Kojima. "His achievements here are an important step forward for the next generation Molecular and Materials Science facilities at TRIUMF which accommodate the internal and external research programs. I hope he enjoyed applying what he had learned in classes to make real hardware with the various technical supports available at TRIUMF.”
Kojima’s work focuses on investigating the magnetic and electronic structure of exotic materials using subatomic probes like muons (produced in TRIUMF’s Meson Hall) and unstable nuclei (such as lithium-8) produced in ISAC-I. His research with TRIUMF’s Centre for Molecular and Materials Science (CMMS) has important ramifications in a variety of fields, including superconductivity and quantum materials.
Kojima, who has supervised five students throughout his two-year tenure at TRIUMF, was thrilled to receive the award. “I was not sure how my previous supervision experiences in Japan may work on students in Canada. I am very happy that at least one of the students liked the way we make a team. I am really encouraged by receiving this award, and I feel as if I have made my first actual step of my career in Canadian research and educations.”
TRIUMF is one of Canada’s major science research co-op employers, bringing approximately 100 students to the lab per year.
DeGooyer’s term with Kojima was just one of many that has been supported by a recent partnership between TRIUMF and RBC’s Future Launch program, which aims to further develop the laboratory’s experiential education and training initiatives. The partnership’s ultimate goal is to increase the number of the laboratory’s hands-on, high-tech-focused work experiences by 50% and to provide an enriched professional development environment for the students in the program. And with thoughtful and supportive supervisors like Kenji Kojima on staff, TRIUMF is well poised to achieve this goal.