November 19, 2019
This award provides recognition to exceptional young scientists who have performed original doctoral thesis work of outstanding scientific quality and achievement in the area of experimental particle physics.
Citation: "For central contribution to the first measurement of Coherent Elastic Neutrino-Nucleus Scattering."
Bjorn Scholz received his B.Sc from Julius-Maximilians University Würzburg (2010) and Dipl.-Phys. from Technical University Dresden (2012). In 2012, he moved to the University of Chicago to join the Physics graduate program. His masters thesis on neutrinoless double beta decay sparked his interest in neutrino physics, which he continued to pursue during his PhD. For his thesis work with Prof. Juan Collar, he was excited to probe the existence of coherent elastic neutrino-nucleus scattering that was predicted over 40 years ago. Dr. Scholz worked on prototyping and deployment of the CsI detector and analysis of the data leading to the first observation of coherent elastic neutrino-nucleus scattering by the COHERENT collaboration. All aspects of the experiment are presented in his thesis, ranging from the calibration measurements, background analysis and data collection to the analysis strategies and the observation of coherent elastic neutrino-nucleus scattering. His thesis was awarded the Springer thesis prize for outstanding PhD research. Following graduate school, Dr. Scholz moved on to use his experience in high-dimensional data analysis in a quantitative investment fund as a data scientist.