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Scholarly Interest Report
James P. Hannon
  • Ph.D., Rice, 1967
Primary Department
   Department of Physics and Astronomy
Research Areas
 Theoretical Condensed Matter Physics, Coherent Gamma-ray Optics, Cooperative Phenomena
Research Statement
 Jim Hannon is pursuing several lines of investigation in theoretical physics. His interests center on coherent phenomena, with
particular emphasis on resonant scattering. Topics under investigation include quasielastic resonant x-ray scattering, spin
holography, coherent excitations of nuclei and gamma-ray optics, resonant neutron optics, and the optics of near resonant scattering of
radiation from systems of cold trapped atoms.

Hannon and his students, in conjunction with George Trammell (now emeritus), have developed the theory of x-ray resonance exchange
scattering, showing that very large resonant enhancements to magnetic sensitive x-ray scattering occur in the vicinity of various absorption edges in magnetic ions. Understanding this strongly enhanced
"magnetic" x-ray scattering is of considerable importance for the interpretation of x-ray scattering experiments. The theory is
applicable to the analysis of a broad range of resonant x-ray elastic and inelastic scattering and absorption experiments involving rare earth, actinide and transition elements.

With the advent of high brightness synchrotron radiation sources, an important new field has opened up involving coherent nuclear
excitations induced by synchrotron radiation pulses traversing matter. Hannon has played an integral role in bringing this field to fruition, both through a series of fundamental theory papers, and through close
collaboration with leading experimental groups. The field is beginning to mature, with dedicated Mossbauer beamlines established
or being set up at the major synchrotron radiation laboratories. Interesting new phenomena occur when systems of nuclei are excited by synchrotron radiation pulses including the creation of nuclear exciton
states, superradiant and subradiant decay, and spatially coherent quantum beats.
Selected Publications

J.P. Hannon "Scattering." 


J. T. Hannon and G. T. Trammell "Coherent gamma-ray optics." Hyperfine Interactions, 123/124 (2000) : 127-274.


J.P. Hannon and G.T. Trammell "Coherent Gamma-ray optics." Hyperfine Interactions (1999)


E. Timmermans and G. T. Trammell "Spin Holography." Phys. Rev. B, 58 (1998) : 5637-5648.


G. T. Trammell and J. P. Hannon "Coherent Gamma Ray Optics." review article for Hyperfine Interactions

Awards, Prizes, & Fellowships
 Wiess College Faculty Associate of the Year, Wiess College (April 2011)