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Nuclear and Surface Physics Group

This is the page of the Nuclear and Surface Physics Group, a multidisciplinary research facility located in the Physics Department of the University of Texas at El Paso, the experimental facilities are located in Room 129 of the Physical Science Building.

The Nuclear and Surface Physics Group services mainly for academic research at UTEP bridging departments in interdisciplinary studies. It houses a wide variety of state-of-the-art multidisplinary instrumentation supported by a team of dedicated experienced staff.

 The main activities of the Group are:

  • Experimental research on X-Ray Photoelectron Spectroscopy, Auger Spectroscopy, UV Spectroscopy, X-Ray Fluorescence, production of thin films by Physical Vapor deposition, detection of underground radon
  • Theoretical research on Neutrino oscillations, Heavy ion reactions, Nuclear matter, Nuclear pasta, Neutron star crusts, Neutron-rich matter, Isoscaling, Nuclear equation of state, Nuclear symmetry energy.
  • Incorporation of graduate, undergraduate and high school students in research.











  • Aracely Rodriguez, 2014, Nuclear theory
  • Rodolfo Gonzalez, 2013, Nuclear theory
  • Jorge Muñoz, 2007-2010, Nuclear theory
  • Alán Dávila, 2007-2010, Nuclear theiry
  • Miguel Bencomo, 2010-2012, XPS
  • Federico López, 2009-2011, XPS/AES
  • Sergio Yanuen Rodríguez, XPS/AES

FORMER Collaborators

  • Bill Durrer
  • Claudio Dorso (Buenos Aires)
  • Alberto Duarte Moller (CIMAV)



  • "Symmetry energy in the liquid-gas mixture", J.A. López and S. Terrazas Porras, Nuc. Phys. A  (2017)see article here.
  • "Correlation Between Underground Radon Gas and Dormant Geological Faults", J.A. López, O. Dena Ornelas , L. Sajo-Bohus, G. Rodríguez, I. Chavarría, J. Nuc. Phys., Mat.Sci., Rad. and Applications, Vol-4, No-1, August 2016 pp. 265–275 (2016)see article here.
  • "Thermodynamics of neutron-rich nuclear matter", J.A. López, S. Terrazas Porras and Araceli Rodríguez Gutiérrez, AIP Conf. Proc. 1753, 050001 (2016)see article here.
  • "Surface modification by nitrogen plasma immersion ion implantation on Austenitic AISI 304 stainless steel", with M. Castro-Colín, W. Durrer and E. Ramírez-Homs, in J. of Iron and Steel Research International 23(4), 380-384, 2016; see article here.




  • Dec. 12-17: Karla Rosita Tellez-Giron Flores, Participant, of Winter School on Nuclear Astrophysics, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Shanghai, China. See here for more information, Dec. 12 – 17, 2016.
  • Oct. 13-16, Israel Chavarria, Travel Award for Conference Experience for Undergraduates in Vancouver, BC CA, sponsored by the Division of Nuclear Physics, APS.
  • Oct. 20-23: J.A. López, Chair, of nuclear physics session, 2016 Joint Meeting 4CS + TSAPS Meeting, and Executive Board Meeting of TSAPS, Las Cruces, NM.
  • Aug. 16-17: J.A. López, Talk "Materials Characterization at UTEP" at " 4° Taller de Espectrometría de Masas con Aceleradores (LEMA)" at the Instituto de Fí­sica of the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México. See pictures of the visit here.
  • Summer 2016. Alan Salcedo, COURI Undergraduate Research Program Assistantship.
  • June 2: J.A. López, received DOD HBCU Instrumentation grant for $400 k. See notification here. 
  • Summer 2016, Israel Chavarria, Victor Blanco Fellowship, to participate in Fermilab’s summer research program. 






  • Oct. 27-28: J.A. López, Invited Talk2011 SACNAS National Conference, San Jose, CA, see program here.
  • July 10-14: J.A. López, Participant at Meeting of INCREASE, at SLAC in Stanford University and LBNL in Berkeley California, see pictures here.
  • May 12: J.A. López, Colloquium Talk, University of California - Riverside.
  • Mar. 18: J.A. López, Colloquium Talk, Cal State U - Fresno.
  • Jan. 26-28: Hosting Scott Pratt (Michigan State U) for Physics Seminar and chat with students.







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