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Publications in VIVO

Munsat, Tobin Leo



Research Areas research areas


research overview

  • Prof. Munsat's research is focused on the physics of planetary surfaces, in particular the microphysics of dust impacts and dusty plasmas. He is the director of the Institute for Modeling Plasma, Atmospheres and Cosmic Dust, with a program of experimental and theoretical investigation of the lunar surface and other near-Earth objects. The centerpiece facility is a 3 MV hypervelocity micrometeoroid accelerator, capable of accelerating micron-sized particles up to 10's of km/s into a simulated lunar environment.


  • plasma diagnostics, tokamak diagnostics, dusty plasmas, hypervelocity impact studies, plasma surface interactions, cosmic dust


selected publications


courses taught

  • PHYS 1110 - General Physics 1
    Secondary Instructor - Spring 2023
    Three lect., one rec. per week, plus three evening exams in the fall and spring semesters. First semester of three-semester sequence for science and engineering students. Covers kinematics, dynamics, momentum of particles and rigid bodies, work and energy, gravitation, simple harmonic motion and introduction to thermodynamics. Degree credit not granted for this course and PHYS 1115.
  • PHYS 1140 - Experimental Physics 1
    Primary Instructor - Fall 2022
    Introduces experimental physics through laboratory observation of a wide range of phenomena. Covers experiments on physical measurements, including mechanics, electricity & magnetism, and optics, with the mathematical analysis of physical errors associated with the experimental process.
  • PHYS 1240 - Sound and Music
    Primary Instructor - Fall 2018
    Explores the physical processes that underlie the diversity of sound and musical phenomena. Topics covered include the physical nature of sound, the perception of sound, the perception of pitch and harmony, musical instruments, synthesizers and samplers, and room acoustics. Geared toward nonscience majors. Department enforced prereq., high school algebra or equivalent. Should not be taken by students with a math MAPS deficiency.
  • PHYS 2020 - General Physics 2
    Primary Instructor - Spring 2018 / Fall 2020 / Spring 2021 / Fall 2021
    Includes three lectures, one two-hour laboratory/recitation per week, plus three evening exams in the fall and spring semesters. Covers electricity and magnetism, light and modern physics. Designed for life science majors, including premed students. Natural science majors with a knowledge of calculus and others taking calculus are urged to take the calculus-based courses PHYS 1110, PHYS 1120, PHYS 1140 and PHYS 2130, rather than PHYS 2010 and PHYS 2020.
  • PHYS 3320 - Principles of Electricity and Magnetism 2
    Primary Instructor - Fall 2019 / Spring 2022
    Continuation of PHYS 3310. Electromagnetic induction; magnetic energy; microscopic theory of magnetic properties; Ac circuits; Maxwell's Equations; planewaves; waveguides and transmission lines; radiation from electric and magnetic dipoles and from an accelerated charge.


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