Skip to main content
Assistant Professor
Joseph Smith headshot
Office #
Rickey 142
Ph.D.-Physics, The Ohio State University (2020); MS-Physics, The Ohio State University (2017); BA-Physics/Mathematics, The College of Wooster (2015)
Year Appointed
Courses - Fall
  • Classical Mechanics I
  • College Physics I
  • General Physics I Lab
  • Physics Research I
  • Physics Research II
Courses - Spring
  • College Physics II
  • General Physics II Lab
  • Mathematical Methods of Physics

Dr. Joseph Smith is a computational physicist specializing in the simulation of intense laser-matter interactions. He routinely runs simulations utilizing hundreds to thousands of processors at the Ohio Supercomputer Center (OSC) and top systems around the country. Recent projects include the optimization of laser-driven ion acceleration, code development to model laser-induced damage of optical components, and scientific code comparisons. He is also interested in physics education research and the development/evaluation of new instructional tools such as virtual reality.


J. R. Smith, B. Snapp, S. Madar, J. R. Brown, J. Fowler, M. Andersen, C. D. Porter, C. Orban “A Smartphone-Based Virtual Reality Plotting System for STEM Education” PRIMUS, 2022.

J. R. Smith, C. Orban, N. Rahman, B. McHugh, R. Oropeza, E. A. Chowdhury “A Particle-In-Cell Code Comparison for Ion Acceleration: EPOCH, LSP, and WarpX” Physics of Plasmas, 2021.

N. Rahman, J. R. Smith, G. Ngirmang, C. Orban “Particle-in-Cell Modeling of a Potential Demonstration Experiment for Double Pulse Enhanced Target Normal Sheath Acceleration” Physics of Plasmas, 2021.

J. R. Smith, C. Orban, J. T. Morrison, K. M. George, G. K. Ngirmang, E. A. Chowdhury, and W. M. Roquemore. “Optimizing Laser-Plasma Interactions for Ion Acceleration using Particle-in-Cell Simulations and Evolutionary Algorithms.” New Journal of Physics, 2020.

G. K. Ngirmang, J. T. Morrison, K. M. George, J. R. Smith, K. D. Frische, C. Orban, E. A. Chowdhury, W. M. Roquemore, “Evidence of Radial Weibel Instability in Relativistic Intensity Laser-Plasma Interactions Inside a Submicron Thick Liquid Target.” Scientific Reports, 2020.

C. D. Porter, J. R. H. Smith, E. M Stagar, A. Simmons, M. Nieberding, C. M. Orban, J. Brown, A. Ayers, “Using Virtual Reality in Electrostatics Instruction: The Impact of Training” Physical Review Physics Education Research, 2020.