• Assistant Professor, Civil And Environmental Engin


  • Edward Cazalas (2018). Defending Cities Against Nuclear Terrorism: Analysis of A Radiation Detector Network for Ground Based Traffic. Homeland Security Affairs Journal. Vol. 14. Published, 12/23/2018.
  • M. Recker (2018). Comparison of SiPM and PMT performance using Cs2LiYCl6:Ce3+ (CLYC) scintillator with two optical windows. IEEE Nuclear Science Symposium. Published, 11/01/2018.
  • Matthew C. Recker, Edward Cazalas & John W. McClory (2018). Pulse shape discrimination with a low-cost digitizer using off-the-shelf components. Nuclear Instruments and Methods in Physics Research Section A. Published, 10/2018.

Research Statement

Dr. Cazalas has research interests in the application of nuclear and radiation physics for the design, development, and application of radiation detector technologies and science. Some of these applications include building and understanding detectors for neutron dosimetry, spectroscopy, imaging, detection systems for nuclear security, and testing detectors, dosimeters, and radiation effects testing and understanding.

Another area of interest is the development and testing of new nano and thin film materials, including quantum dots, in architectures designed for radiation sensing and/or hardness. This includes performing radiation exposure experiments of new semiconductor designs, including those that utilize 2d or quantum materials. This work involves building understanding of how various radiation types and energy interact with different electronic device components, and how the released energy (electrons) impact the function of these devices. 

Dosimetry is an important component of work as it is required to assess the amount of energy absorbed into test objects of interest (e.g. detector crystals) or indicate a level of potential exposure to living beings (e.g. humans). Work in dosimetry focuses on quantifying dose with the development of new dosimeter designs, and by simulations. Work in dosimetry also includes minimizing unwanted dose, though effective shielding design, or reduction/elimination of potential exposure pathways.

Finally, the experimental work carried out in lab is guided through creating, executing, and understanding various computational simulations and models, such as Monte-Carlo based radiation transport codes (i.e. MCNP, GEANT4), and utilization of the COMSOL Multiphysics modeling package. These simulations provide a virtual testbed for efficiently testing new detector, dosimeter, shielding designs, and radiation effects and for comprehension of experimental setups or operational scenarios.

Research Keywords

  • Nuclear Physics
  • Radiation Physics
  • Design and application of radiation detectors
  • Nuclear Security
  • Dosimetry
  • Radiation Effects
  • Nanomaterials
  • Monte Carlo Simulations


  • T. Quist, E. Cazalas, “MCNP modeling of a multi-volume neutron spectrometer,” American Nuclear Society Winter Conference, online presentation, Nov. 16-19, 2020. Awarded “Best Student Paper” award by ANS Radiation Protection and Shielding Division. Conference Paper, Refereed, Presented, 11/16/2020.
  • Radiation Sensor Networks for Counter-Terrorism. Invited Talk/Keynote, Presented, 09/17/2020.
  • K. Powell, M. Lund, M.-J. Wang, Y. Qian, D. Magginetti, M. Reese, E. Cazalas, G. Sjoden, H. Yoon, “Photovoltaic Response of Thin-Film CdTe Solar Cells under Accelerated Neutron Radiation in a TRIGA Reactor,” Electronic Materials Symposium, National Science Foundation (Jun. 2020). Conference Paper, Refereed, Presented, 06/01/2020.
  • Matthew C. Recker, Edward Cazalas, John W. McClory, “Comparison of SiPM and PMT performance using CYLC scintillator with two optical windows”, IEEE Nuclear Science Symposium, Sydney, Australia (Nov. 2018). Conference Paper, Refereed, Presented, 11/2018.

Research Groups

  • Will Bates, Graduate Student. Nuclear. 01/01/2021 - present.
  • Aaron Fjeldsted, Undergraduate Student. 01/01/2020 - 05/01/2020.
  • Codey Olsen, Graduate Student. Nuclear. 09/01/2019 - present.
  • Jesse Snow, Graduate Student. Nuclear. 05/01/2019 - present.
  • Ryan Godin, Undergraduate Student. 05/01/2019 - 05/01/2020.
  • Teancum Quist, Graduate Student. Nuclear. 01/01/2019 - present. Awards/Scholarships/Stipends: NRC fellowship (Stipend).

Research Equipment and Testing Expertise

  • Advanced analog to digitization equipment. Access to UU TRIGA Reactor. Neutron/gamma-ray/electron/alpha-particle sources. Low background pre-WWII steel enclosure. Lower flux X-ray machine. Probe station (with radioactive material and x-ray machine capability). Fast timing electronics and oscilloscopes. Detector/electronics development lab. Contact: edward.cazalas@utah.edu .