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Amy Keesee, Ph.D.



Research Assistant Professor
President, West Virginia Chapter of the Association for Women in Science

Department of Physics and Astronomy
White Hall 339
West Virginia University
Morgantown, WV 26506

Phone: 304-293-5113



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For my dissertation research, I studied the amount of ionization in a helicon plasma source by measuring the radial neutral argon profile in a helicon plasma source using laser-induced fluorescence, passive emission spectroscopy, and collisional-radiative modeling. Currently, I primarily study the plasma physics of the magnetosphere. I am very involved with supporting women in science and outreach to future scientists through organizations such as the Association for Women in Science.


B.S. in Mathematics from Davidson College, M.S. in physics and Ph.D. in plasma physics from West Virginia University.

WiSE Women Feature

WiSE Women

The WiSE Giving Circle brings together West Virginia University alumnae and friends who want to impact the field of science by encouraging and mentoring young women in their pursuit of professional careers within the STEM disciplines – science, technology, engineering, and math.

Learn more about WiSE

Cooper Lecture Feature

Life and Death of Comets

With more awareness of comets and asteroids coming close to the Earth and even entering our atmosphere, it is crucial that we understand the life and death of these celestial bodies. Harvard-Smithsonian Professor John Raymond describes the way Sun-grazing comets come to an end. In particular, he gives us an account of the death of the Lovejoy comet that took place in December 2011 and how it was used to better understand the Sun’s corona.

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Mysterious Radio Bursts, Sent From Deep Space

Reporting in Science, researchers including WVU physics post-docs Sam Bates and Lina Levin write of discovering four radio bursts from outer space. WVU professors Duncan Lorimer and Maura McLaughlin were on the team that detected the first such explosion in 2007. On NPR’s Science Friday, Dr. Lorimer discusses what could be causing these radio signals, such as evaporating black holes, an idea proposed by Stephen Hawking in the 1970s.

Listen to Science Friday Episode