2023 Mayer Scholarship Recipient
The Department of Physics is pleased to announce that Willie Beeson is the recipient of the 2023 Professor Walter G. Mayer Endowed Scholarship, which supports a graduate student pursuing a Ph.D. in experimental physics.
Willie’s research explores novel materials with high magnetic anisotropy, a critical property for magnets to maintain their magnetization. Traditional high magnetic anisotropy materials contain rare-earth elements or precious metals, which face sustainability challenges. Willie is taking a new approach to explore the high entropy phase space, where new magnetic phases may be achieved by exploiting the stabilizing effect of configurational entropy. His work so far has demonstrated the feasibility of this approach in achieving high magnetic anisotropy materials, which has been presented at recent conferences and resulted in a patent application. During the fellowship, he will investigate several material systems using earth-abundant elements towards magnetic recording media and permanent magnet applications that cannot be achieved by conventional means.