Solar Physics/Astronomy and Space Physics REU Program for Summer 2010


  • Joanna Bridge, Engineering Physics, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
  • Dustin Hickey, Physics, Colby College
  • Graham Kerr, Physics and Astronomy, University Glasgow
  • Ian Lyon, Engineering and Physics, Carroll College
  • Cameron Martus, Astrophysics, University of Cincinnati
  • Margaret Robinson, Physics, Williams College
  • Nathan Roskoff, Physics & Mechanical Engineering, Clarkson University, Clarkson University

    2010 research projects and mentors are described here.

    Pre-arrival tasks list is here.

    Room and computer arrangements are described here.


    The Calendar of Events includes:

  • Introductory Interactive Data Language (IDL) tutorials
  • Talks about the Sun, based on The Cambridge Encyclopedia of the Sun"
  • Talks about web page authoring, ethics in science, what to expect in grad school
  • Lectures on solar magnetohydrodynamics (MHD) by Prof. Eric Priest, St. Andrews University

  • Default schedule: Plan to arrive on May 31, depart on August 7 (you must check out by 9am on August 7th).
  • By air: Work out your detailed itinerary to Bozeman/Big Sky/Yellowstone (BZN) airport, and its cost, but don't actually buy a ticket until you have contacted your research mentor. His/her responsibility is to furnish you with an e-mail confirming the itinerary and the amount we will pay (the least expensive economy/coach round-trip airfare from your home or university to Bozeman on the default arrival and departure dates), per your offer letter. This e-mail must be sent before you make the purchase, to authorize the reimbursement. Once you have purchased your ticket, please keep copies of:
    (1) your receipt;
    (2) your itinerary -- which may be included in your receipt;
    (3) the authorizing e-mail from your research mentor, and
    (4) your boarding pass.
    Turn in these documents upon your arrival to get reimbursed. It takes a few weeks to process the reimbursement check.

  • By car: Make sure your research mentor knows that you plan to drive and has sent you an authorizing e-mail stating how much the REU program will reimburse you for your travel expenses. You will be reimbursed for mileage ($0.50/mile up to 1000 miles, $0.47/mile thereafter) on the basis of the distance from your home or university to Bozeman. However, the total reimbursement cannot exceed the amount of round trip airfare from the commercial airport nearest your home or university to the Bozeman/Big Sky/Yellowstone airport (BZN). When you submit your request for reimbursement (after you arrive in Bozeman), you will be expected to provide documentation of:
    (1) the distance (printout from, or the like);
    (2) the round trip airfare (printout from, or the like);
    (3) the amount your mentor has committed to pay for your travel (printout of the authorizing e-mail).

  • From outside the US: For non-US participants, support for travel costs is limited to the economy roundtrip airfare from JFK/New York. If you are not a US citizen, you will need a J-1 visa to enter the United States. Contact your REU mentor as soon as possible to get this process started.

    You will be lodged in Roskie Residence Hall. You will have a single occupancy room, fully furnished with linens (including two sheets, mattress pad, pillow case, pillow and blanket, but not towels), personal refrigerator, fan, telephone, and internet connection. Extra blankets are available at the front desk upon request. Johnstone has shared laundry and kitchen facilities (with pots and pans) and a game pod (pool table etc). Housing, parking, and internet connection fees are paid by the REU program. You will be mailed an information packet with a residence hall contract form, which you must complete and return to the REU program coordinator (below). A parking permit can be picked up at the University Police Station (Huffman Building, 28 on the campus map) after you've checked in. A parking lot closure schedule during the summer will be available.


    Library access is provided by the Solar Physics REU program, and will be arranged after you've arrived.


    The stipend for the 10-week program is $4862, plus a $365 meal allowance. Partial payments of the stipend will be distributed at the beginning of the 1st, 5th, and 9th weeks of the 10-week program. The balance will be mailed after the MSU residence hall staff confirms that there are no charges for damage, cleaning, etc, and the MSU library staff confirms that all library materials have been returned. Unless you request otherwise (say, because you choose to buy a residence hall meal plan), the meal allowance will credited to your MSU ID card (called a Cat Card). This card, funded by the REU program, can be used at the cafeteria in the Strand Union Building and Miller Dining Hall , as well as the bookstore, library, and the residence hall laundry. Meal plans are also available and may be purchased at the Miller Dining Hall.

    Information about the taxability of the stipend is here .

    Information about what do do with your stipend, banking-wise (for international students), is here.


    You arerequired to carry medical insurance. MSU does not provide health and accident insurance for REU program participants. You are financially responsible for any medical bills incurred as a result of emergency or other medical treatment. You must notify the REU program coordinator in writing if you have medical conditions about which emergency medical personnel should be informed.


    Consent forms serve several purposes. If medical treatment is needed because of injury or illness during the REU program, every effort will be made to comply with the information that you provide. We need your consent to obtain emergency treatment on your behalf, and need documentation of your insurance coverage (a copy of your insurance card) for that purpose. Also, during the REU program photographs and videotape footage may be obtained to document the program's activities. Your consent is needed for this purpose.

    Print out the CONSENT FORM (pdf), fill it out, attach a copy of your insurance card and a notification of medical conditions about which emergency medical personnel should be informed, and mail it to Solar Physics REU Program, Physics Department, Montana State University, Bozeman, MT 59717-3840.


    The REU program provides participants with access, through their Cat Card, to facilities such as those of Intramurals and Recreation and Outdoor Recreation. If you've explored the MSU REU web site from past years, you've no doubt seen pictures of camping & rafting trips that have used equipment rented at very reasonable prices from Outdoor Recreation, such as: Camping at Hyalite Reservoir, near Bozeman, Summer 2001 and Rafting on the Yellowstone, Summer 2004. Bring appropriate clothing and gear for camping and backpacking, if you want to join these trips!


  • MSU information
  • Bozeman information
  • Outside Bozeman
  • Montana information
  • Contact Information