Dr. Elena Long joined the physics at the University of New Hampshire as a Post Doc in 2013 and joined the faculty as an Assistant Professor in 2017. A recepient of the JSA Promising Young Scientist Award and the JSA Post Doctoral Research Prize, Dr. Long is researching the ways that a tensor-polarized target can be utilized to understand nuclear effects with a focus on understanding how the quarks inside of protons and neutrons come together to form atomic nuclei.
Dr. Long is the lead spokesperson on an approved experiment at Jefferson Lab to do the first measurement on the quasi-elastic tensor asymmetry Azz. By utilizing tensor polarization, which enhances the deuteron's D-state, and looking at kinematics in the x>1 region, short range nuclear effects are enhanced. This experiment will provide insight into relativistic nucleon-nucleon calculations, such as light cone and virtual neucleon methods, as well as provide new experimental constraints on decades-old quetsions about the S/D ratio of deuteron wavefunctions.
She is also working on measuring the deuteron structure function, b1, which was approved as the Jefferson Lab experiment E12-13-011. The b1 structure function only exists in tensor polarized, spin-1 particles. If the deuteron is a simple combination of a proton and neutron, b1 is zero. All conventional models predict b1to be vanishingly small at 0.1 < x < 0.7. However, a previous measurement by HERMES showed a large measurement around x = 0.45 that's 2 sigma from zero. The current measurement looks to greatly improve the uncertainty in this range, as well as map out a possible sign change in b1.
Alongside her physics research, Dr. Long has been working on increasing resources and diversity within physics. In 2009, she founded the organization lgbt+physicists, which has grown to include networking opportunites, an OutList, and worked with the American Physical Society (APS) to publish the LGBT Climate in Physics Report. She also serves as the Deputy Chair on the APS's effort to create a Forum of Diversity and Inclusion.