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Research Professionals

Cathy Dukescathy dukes uva lasp

Research Scientist
Director, Laboratory for Astrophysics and Surface Physics

The University of Michigan, B.S. (High Honors in Physics, 1990
The Univeristy of Virginia, M.S. in Engineering Physic, 1994

Department of Materials Science & Engineering
University of Virginia
PO Box 400745
395 McCormick Road
Charlottesville, VA 22904-4745
Office: Thornton Hall Room B104
p: 434-243-8756
f: 434-924-1353
e-mail

Research Interests


My research focuses on interaction of energetic particles (ions, electrons) and photons with surfaces. Our goals are to understand the mechanisms leading to electronic excitations and how these excitations evolve and lead to the emission of light (luminescence), electrons, radiation, atoms and molecules (sputtering and photodesorption), and to radiation damage, chemical changes or heat. We currently study metals, rare gas solids, condensed molecular gases, ultrathin carbon foils, diamond, minerals, oxides and rocks. The studies are driven by interest in fundamental phenomena and by applications to astrophysics, space exploration, semiconductor processing, nuclear fusion, gas discharges and biology. We recently started studying ozone generation by triboelectricity generated by rock fracture, with potential widespread applications in Earth and Environmental Scieences. 

Professonal Experience and Memberships


Laboratory for Astrophysics and Surface Physics (LASP), University of Virginia, Charlottesville, VA
     Laboratory Director, June 2015 - present
     Research Scientist, February 1994 - present
     Graduate Research Assistant, June 1991 - December 1993
     Physics Dept. Graduate Teaching Assistant, September 1990 - May 1991
Fermi National Laboratory - Batavia, IL
     University of Virginia Research Assistant - Short-Term, June 1996 - August 1996
Brookhaven National Laboratory - Upton, NY
     University of Michigan Research Asst., January 1990 - August 1990
     National Science Foundation Fellowship Intern, June 1989 - August 1989
CERN (European Org. for Particle Research) - Geneva, Switzerland
     University of Michigan Undergraduate Fellowship, July 1988 - December 1988

Activities and Awards

Ion Irradiation Facility - UVa - Director/Manager (1994 - present)

Surface Analysis Facility - UVa - Director/Manager (1994 - present)

2018 APS Conference for Undergraduate Women in Physics Organizing Committee - current

Nanoscale Materials Characterization Facility (NMCF) Facility - XPS Scientist

UVa SEAS Surface and Interface Group (Chair: Petra Reinke)

NASA / NSF / Austrian Science Fund Proposal Reviews 

Publication Reviews (Science, JGR, Icarus, Surface Interfaces and Analysis, NIMB, etc.)

Lunar Sample Loan Agreement 2012 - present

Antarctic Meteorite Loan Agreement 2016 - present

Astronomy and Astrophysics Editor (2012)

MSE Department Safety Committee (2011 - present)

AAS Division of Planetary Science Member (2014 - present)

National Science Foundation Fellowship (BNL) - 1989

University of Michigan Research Fellowship - 1988

Selected Publications

Google Scholar

1) C.A. Dukes and R.E. Johnson, Contribution of Surface Processes to the Lunar Exosphere: Laboratory Experiments, in Encyclopedia of Lunar Science ed. B. Cudnik, accepted Feb (2017)

2) P. Riccardi, A. Sindona, C.A. Dukes, Local charge exchange of He+ ions at Aluminum surfaces, Physics Letters A 381.13: 1174-1176 (2017)

3) C. Bu, C. A. Dukes and R. A. Baragiola, Spontaneous cracking of amorphous solid water (ASW) films and the dependence on micro-porosity, App. Phys. Lett 109, 201902 (2016)

4) C. Bu, D. Bahr, C. A. Dukes and R. A. Baragiola, Effects of Cracking on the Surface Potential of Icy Grains in Saturn’s E-ring: Laboratory Studies, ApJ 825.2: 106 (2016)

5) C. A. Dukes and D. Hurley, Sampling the Moon, Science 351,6270, 232-233 (Invited Perspective.) (2016)

6) M.J. Loeffler, C.A. Dukes, R. Christoffersen and R.A. Baragiola, Space Weathering of Silicates Simulated by Laser Irradiation, Meteoritics and Planetary Science (2016)

7) P. Riccardi, R. Baragiola, and C. Dukes, Electron emission and electronic stopping in the interaction of slow helium ions with aluminum, Phys. Rev. B 92, 4, 045425 (2015)

8) C. A. Dukes and R. A. Baragiola, The Lunar Exosphere-Surface Connection: Measurements of Secondary Ions from Apollo, Icarus 255, 51 - 57 (2015)

9) C. A. Dukes and R. A. Baragiola, Secondary electron emission from lunar soil: yields, energy distribution and charging effects, Planet. Space Sci. 89, 36-41 (2013)

10) P. Vernazza, D. Fulvio, R. Brunetto, J. P. Emery, C. A. Dukes, F. Cipriani, O. Witasse, M. J. Schaible, B., Zanda, G. Strazzulla, R. A. Baragiola, Paucity of Tagish Lake-like parent bodies in the Asteroid Belt and among Jupiter Trojans, Icarus 225, 1, 517-525 (2013)

11) E. H. Mitchell, U. Raut, D. Fulvio, M. J. Schaible, C. A. Dukes and R. A. Baragiola, Ultraviolet photodesorption driver for water migration on the lunar surface, PSS 89, 42-46 (2013)

12) R. A. Baragiola, C.A. Dukes & D. Hedges, Ozone generation by rock fracture: earthquake early warning? Appl. Phys. Lett. 99, 204101 (2011) .doi.org/10.1063/1.3660763

13) C.A. Dukes, W.Y. Chang, M. Famá, and R. Baragiola, Laboratory studies on the sputtering contribution to the sodium atmospheres of Mercury and the Moon , Icarus, 212, 2, 463-469 (2011)

14) C.A. Dukes and R. A. Baragiola, Radiation-Enhanced Aqueous Dissolution of Minerals, MRS Proceedings, 1298: mrsf10-1298-r04-05 (2011)

15) D.J. Burke, C.A. Dukes, J.-H. Kim, J. Shi, M. Famá and R.A. Baragiola, Solar Wind Contribution to Surficial Lunar Water: Laboratory Investigations, Icarus 211, 2, 1082-1088 (2010)