Walter Mark Wilcox
BiographyAt the beginning of my career as a faculty member at Baylor, I decided that I would try to develop my own lecture notes in various classes into a form that was useable by and helpful to the students and would serve as a coherent accumulation point for further revisions and improvements. The point was to refine the raw ore, but the magnitude of the work involved never allowed a polishing. This is the pattern I have used to develop other advanced physics materials on my trademarked "Open Text Project" website. These have been added to and edited as the opportunities have presented themselves. Fortunately, in the past several years opportunities have presented themselves for producing finished textbooks, one of which is the "Quantum Principles and Particles" text published by Taylor and Francis.
At UCLA, I was very fortunate to be assigned to be the graduate student Teaching Assistant of a year-long (3 quarters; Physics 115A, B and C) undergraduate quantum mechanics course taught by Julian Schwinger at UCLA, beginning in January 1979, and continuing on to early December. As his TA, I was required (by him) to do all of the problems assigned to the students, and to submit both my solutions and the graded homework from the students each week. Since I was also his graduate student, it was rather important for me to get the problems right without embarrassing myself too much! To say I learned a lot in the course would be a great understatement. In a larger sense, Schwinger's influence and organizing spirit have been integral to many of the works I have attempted, both in my research and in the classroom. Julian Schwinger was an intellectual giant of the first magnitude. His influence on physics was profound, and his contributions to nuclear physics and field theory were numerous and insightful. In addition, Schwinger was an acclaimed and original teacher.
I have been a referee for Physical Review D, Physical Review Letters, Physics Letters B and other physics journals. I have advised two Ph.D. graduate students, Dean Darnell (2006) and Victor Guerrero (2011).
At Baylor, we believe in a balanced approach to learning and research. I am equally passionate about teaching physics, and I have developed a trademarked web site for my teaching materials called "Open Text Project". See the URL:
Areas of Research / Professional Expertise
Areas: Lattice QCD, Matrix Deflation Algorithms, Finite Quark Matter
My main area of research is the study of the interactions of particles known as quarks and gluons. The theory of quark and gluon interactions is called Quantum Chromodynamics (QCD). "Lattice QCD" represents a numerical attempt to solve, and compare to experiment, physically observable quantities using a discrete space-time lattice of points.
My work in Lattice QCD is centered on three areas: extension of matrix deflation algorithms, noise suppression using new eigenspectrum subtraction algorithms and measurement of hadron electromagnetic properties, including electric and magnetic polarizabilities. I also have an interest in the search for many-baryon states forming new types of quark matter.
My family and church are my greatest joys. My wife, Diana, and I have a wonderful son, Christopher John Wilcox, who is now in first grade. Diana is a Ph.D. psychologist, author, and now a student at Truett Seminary at Baylor.