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Thomas M. Semkow, Ph.D.

  • Thomas M. Semkow

    Thomas M. Semkow, Ph.D.

    • Director of the Nuclear Chemistry Laboratory

    • Ph.D., Nuclear Chemistry, Washington University, St. Louis, MO (1983)
    • Postdoctoral training: Nuclear Physics, Washington University
    • Postdoctoral training: Oak Ridge National Laboratory
    • Postdoctoral training: Brookhaven National laboratory

Research Interests

All aspects of radioactivity present in the environment, including natural and man-made sources, carry the potential to effect our health. The Semkow laboratory applies a scientific basis for understanding emergency response to incidents involving ionizing radiation, such as accidents and terrorist acts. The laboratory is developing experimental methods to measure radioactivity in environmental matrices and biological fluids; constructing ionizing radiation detectors and testing of ultralow background techniques such as gamma-ray spectroscopy, alpha spectroscopy, proportional and liquid-scintillation counting.

Dr. Semkow is interested in the development of mathematical models to describe health-related processes occurring in the environment, as well as other physical processes. Models under review include; fractal models of the distribution of toxic trace elements and radionuclides in coal-fly-ash aerosols and soils, development of the fractal theory of radon emanation from solids, statistical theory of radioactive decay and measurement using distribution theory and stochastic processes, application of computers and networks in the laboratory and computer programming and development of numerical algorithms.

Select Publications

Semkow TM, Bradt CJ, Beach SE, Haines DK, Khana AJ, Bari A, Torres MA, Marrantino JC, Syed U-F, Kitto ME, Hoffman TJ, Curtis P.
Calibration of Ge gamma-ray spectrometers for complex sample geometries and matrices.
Nucl Instr Meth Phys Res A.
(2015)
799
(NULL):
105-113.
Haines DK, Semkow TM, Khan AJ, Hoffman TJ, Meyer ST, Beach SE.
Muon and neutron-induced background in gamma-ray spectrometry.
Nuclear Instruments & Methods in Physics Research Section A-Accelerators Spectrometers Detectors & Associated Equipment.
(2011)
652
(1):
326-329.
Semkow TM, Haines DK, Beach SE, Kilpatrick BJ, Khan AJ, O'Brien K.
Oscillations in radioactive exponential decay.
Physics Letters B.
(2009)
675
(5):
415-419.