Cindy Regal has been awarded the University of Colorado’s (CU's) first-ever Clare Boothe Luce Professorship Award. The $645,000 award is designed to “encourage women to enter, study, graduate, and teach in science, mathematics, and engineering.” The professorship award will fund Regal’s teaching and research for the next five years.
Regal arrived at CU in January 2010, just in time to teach the junior electronics lab and put the finishing touches on her new lab in JILA. There she plans to engineer and explore new quantum systems using her knowledge of cold atoms and nanomechanical oscillators, both of which she sees as potential "quantum resources." Her graduate students are currently developing a system for single neutral-atom trapping and investigating materials and tension dependence for unique nanostrings.
Regal did her graduate work at JILA with Fellow Debbie Jin, where she was able to get a cloud of fermions to stay cold enough for long enough to dance together and form a condensate. Next, she did a postdoc with Fellow Konrad Lehnert, where she investigated techniques for cooling nanomechanical oscillators with microwaves, a process similar to laser cooling. In a second postdoc at Caltech in Jeff Kimball's lab, Regal explored both laser cooling of nanomechanical oscillators along with quantum optics and quantum information processing with cold atoms.