Michael Brown

Professor of Physics


Michael Brown

An authority on experimental plasma physics (the physics of hot, ionized gases), Prof. Brown pursues research dealing with solar physics, spheromaks, magnetic reconnection, astrophysical plasmas and nuclear fusion energy. He is well-prepared to address from a scientific standpoint such topics as energy and environmental issues, government funding of science, and general physics.

He is the principal investigator in the Swarthmore Spheromak Experiment (SSX) which studies fundamental plasma physics phenomena such as magnetic reconnection using rings of plasma called spheromaks. A co-founder of the Center for Magnetic Self-Organization in Laboratory and Astrophysical Plasmas, his experiments at Swarthmore have received more than $2.5 million in funding from the U.S. Department of Energy, N.S.F., Research Corp, Petroleum Research Fund, NASA and others.

Prof. Brown received his Ph.D. from Dartmouth College and came to the Swarthmore faculty in 1994 after doing post-doctoral work at Caltech and teaching at Occidental College. He is a past member of the executive committee of the American Physical Society Division of Plasma Physics and a winner of the Department of Energy Junior Investigator Award.