Joint Institute for Nuclear Astrophysics

The NSCL is one of the core institutions of the Joint Institute for Nuclear Astrophysics (JINA), a new NSF Physics Frontiers Center on Nuclear Astrophysics beginning in August 2003.
JINA has been formed to help identify and address the critical questions in nuclear astrophysics, including:

  • What is the origin of heavy elements in nature?
  • What can we learn from nuclear processes on extremely compact stellar objects?

JINA carries out an active research program to address these questions. Some of the world’s leading accelerator facilities, computational models, and observatories are used in these studies. JINA fosters a truly interdisciplinary approach to nuclear astrophysics that seeks to overcome the boundaries between astrophysics and nuclear physics as well as those between experiment and theory.
MSU participates in JINA through an extensive experimental program in nuclear astrophysics at NSCL, a program in observational astrophysics through MSU’s astronomy group, and a program in theoretical nuclear astrophysics that includes modeling of nucleosynthesis processes at both the Department of Physics and Astronomy and NSCL.
JINA offers:

  • opportunities for collaboration;
  • employment opportunities for undergraduates, graduate students, and postdocs.;
  • workshops, including opportunities for scientists to organize JINA-sponsored workshops;
  • visitor programs for students, postdocs, and faculty;
  • programs for K-12 and undergraduate students;
  • programs to enhance diversity;
  • a comprehensive website on nuclear astrophysics that includes nuclear data and educational materials (lectures, movies, animations);
  • a Virtual Journal for Nuclear Astrophysics that provides a weekly listing of new scientific articles in nuclear astrophysics.