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Center for the
Sciences & Agriculture
Room 234

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Pyle Box: 1201

Russell Kincaid

Associate Professor,
Mathematics

Dr. Russell W. Kincaid attended Denison University in Granville, Ohio from 1985-1989. While a student at Denison, he performed computer programming at Arvin-Calspan Corporation in Dayton in an effort to modify an Air Force counter-measure program from a two-dimensional to a three dimensional code. During another break between semesters, he worked for the Minerva Research Corporation, where he assisted in design of components for an optical scanning system. During the summer of 1988, he performed experiments involving anodic bonding of Pyrex glass to silicon in the integrated circuitry area of the Ford Research Laboratory in Dearborn, Michigan. He graduated cum laude from Denison in 1989 with majors in physics and mathematics.

Following the completion of his undergraduate degrees, Dr. Kincaid received a Department of Energy Magnetic Fusion Engineering Technology Fellowship to fund his pursuit of a Ph.D. in Nuclear Engineering at North Carolina State University. While at N.C. State, he spent two summers working in the Pellet Fueling Group of the Fusion Energy Division of the Oak Ridge National Laboratory. His work included computer modeling and laboratory experimentation with single and two stage light-gas guns as well as an electron-beam pellet acceleration device. These pellet acceleration techniques were all being investigated as candidates for fueling Tokamak reactors by injecting frozen pellets containing isotopes of hydrogen. His dissertation research at N.C. State involved investigating a fourth device, an electrothermal launcher, as another approach to Tokamak fueling. He also performed experiments to establish the neutron flux on the PULSTAR nuclear reactor at N.C. State. This research involved the irradiation of gold, indium, and rhodium foils, both with and without neutron absorbing cadmium covers, in order to characterize the thermal, epithermal and fast flux of the reactor. He graduated with a Ph.D. in Nuclear Engineering from N. C. State in 1995 with a specialization in fusion and plasma physics.

From 1996-2002, Dr. Kincaid worked for UTRON, Inc. as a research scientist, proposal writer, and program manager. The research primarily involved finding industrial applications for pulsed plasma jets. His work included performing experimental research and development on new thermal spraying processes, high efficiency fine metal powder production devices, and developing metal matrix composite production techniques. This research required the utilization of a wide variety of advanced materials. Other projects on which he was involved included developing methods for the environmentally benign removal of lead based paints, creation of an ultra-fast opening switch for electrical grid fault situations, and the production of countermeasure flares for aircraft threatened by heat seeking missiles. The pulsed plasma jets used in the majority of these programs were created by discharging high voltage capacitor banks through a capillary tube. Such a discharge creates a high temperature, high-pressure plasma. Variations among the devices ranged from designs which operated in single-shot mode inside a vacuum chamber, to devices which operated in atmospheric conditions at repetition rates as high as 100 Hz. His designs created plasmas from ablating material from capillary walls as well as from working fluids including argon, nitrogen, helium, and cryogenic liquid argon injected into the capillary during operation.

As a proposal writer at UTRON, he identified over forty appropriate topics for response in SBIR (Small Business Innovation Research) solicitations and was the primary author on over twenty Phase I SBIR proposals and five Phase II SBIR proposals after successful completion of Phase I. These proposals collectively generated over 25% of company income over a four-year period. During these years, he also managed the experimental programs for nine SBIR programs that utilized pulsed plasmas. All nine programs succeeded in meeting their proposal objectives. He directed all aspects, including proposal preparation, design, fabrication, and experimental work, of six SBIR programs (three simultaneously). During the course of these programs, he managed the work of up to three technicians, an electrical engineer, a mechanical engineer, a machinist, and a draftsman.

From 2002-2003, he performed both scientific and business analysis for Unisphere, Inc., on a variety of technologies on behalf of the United States military. Here, he provided in depth technical and market analyses on innovative technologies including wastewater processing, unexploded ordnance and explosives detection, lead based paint abatement, chemical and biological decontamination using plasmas, marine organism antifouling coatings, and expandable shelters for military applications.

He has worked in academia since 2003, and is currently nearing the completion of his eleventh year at Wilmington College. His training in nuclear engineering and his experience with fine metal powders at UTRON have led him to the issue of fine depleted uranium powders, which he has been studying for the last five years. He has published on this topic, as well as presenting at numerous colleges, environmental organizations, and an international conference. He has also published on probability on the topic of weighted dice.