Name: Brooke Russell
Title: The Neil and Jane Pappalardo Special Fellow in Physics, 2024-2026
Phone: (617) 253-8538
Office: MIT Department of Physics
77 Massachusetts Avenue, 26-447
Cambridge, MA 02139

Related Links:
Pappalardo Fellowships in Physics

Area of Physics

Experimental Nuclear and Particle Physics, Instrumentation

Research Interests

Brooke Russell is an experimental nuclear and particle physicist. Her research focuses on elucidating the landscape of beyond the Standard Model (BSM) physics brought about by massive neutrinos. This work currently involves neutrino property characterization and the study of neutrino interactions with matter.

Neutrinos are the most abundant massive particle in the universe. Ubiquity notwithstanding, much remains unknown about their underlying properties. With the DUNE experiment, Brooke aims to observe neutrino and antineutrino oscillation patterns to precisely measure neutrino mixing parameters. She is actively involved in the design, testing, and analysis of the liquid argon DUNE near detector (ND-LAr), which will measure and constrain the neutrino flux and constrain the response for a near-far detector oscillation measurement. Brooke’s work currently focuses on measuring neutrino-nucleus interactions and making detailed detector performance evaluations with small-scale demonstrators to mitigate cross section and detector systematic uncertainties, respectively, in future long-baseline neutrino oscillation analyses.

Brooke actively develops “blue sky” instrumentation, with a focus on enabling new detector modalities with broad applications. She is interested in quantum sensor device development for novel  precision measurements using table-top scale experiments.

Biographical Sketch

Brooke earned an A.B. in physics from Princeton University in 2011. In her senior year, she was a co-captain of the women’s varsity track and field team. From 2011 to 2013, she was a research assistant in the Particle and Nuclear Astrophysics group in the Princeton Physics Department, using chemical engineering techniques to remove radon daughters from liquid scintillator for the low-background Borexino solar neutrino experiment. Brooke earned her Ph.D. in physics from Yale University in 2020. Her dissertation work focused on novel signal processing and imaging techniques for liquid argon time-projection chambers (LArTPCs) with the MicroBooNE experiment. She was awarded the Gertrude Scharff-Goldhaber Prize from Brookhaven National Laboratory for her work. From 2020 to 2023, Brooke was an Owen Chamberlain postdoctoral fellow in the Physics Division at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. At Berkeley, she helped develop low-power, cryo-compatible pixelated charge and light detector system-on-a-chip readout. In 2021, Brooke was a recipient of the L’Oreal USA Women in Science Fellowship.

Selected Publications

  • A. ​Abed Abud et al. (DUNE Collaboration), Deep Underground Neutrino Experiment (DUNE) Near Detector Conceptual Design Report, Instruments (2021) 31 [arXiv:2103.13910].
  • P. Abratenko et al. (MicroBooNE Collaboration), Neutrino event selection in the MicroBooNE liquid argon time projection chamber using Wire-Cell 3-D imaging, clustering and charge-light matching, JINST  16 (2021) P06043 [arXiv:2011.01375].
  • C. Adams et al. (MicroBooNE Collaboration), Ionization Electron Signal Processing in Single Phase LArTPCs I. Algorithm Description and Quantitative Evaluation with MicroBooNE Simulation,  JINST 13 (2018) P07006 [arXiv:1802.08709].
  • B. Russell, On the road less traveled: A Black physicists’ journey in academiaPhysics Today 26 October 2020.