Gerhard Lotz, PhD

Associate Professor, Augustana - Sciences


Associate Professor, Augustana - Sciences
(780) 679-1521
C171 Classroom Building
4901-46 Ave
Camrose AB
T4V 2R3



Ph.D (Theoretical Nuclear Physics) University of Alberta, 1989

B.Sc. (Honours Physics) University of Alberta, 1982

I have been teaching physics and mathematics at Augustana since 1990.

How the physical world works fascinates me and I try to convey the beauty of physics and mathematics to students.

I am a theoretical physicist, but through teaching have come to really appreciate and learn the tools of the trade of the experimental side of physics.

I very much enjoy being active outdoors, especially running, biking and cross country skiing. I coach the Augustana running team ( ) on the side.


Teaching is at the heart of what we do at Augustana. 

I try to convey my enthusiasm for physics and encourage students to think broadly about what physics is, how it works, and why it is important to understand for living in our highly technological world.

I have taught every physics course offered at Augustana, and many mathematics courses.

Scholarly activity

My specific research is in theoretical nuclear physics. Basically I try to understand how the atomic nucleus works. In particular, I model photonucleon knockout reactions using the relativistic quantum mechanical Dirac equation.

It is important and fulfilling to be a generalist at a small undergraduate institution. I have developed strong interests in astrophysics and experimental physics while working at Augustana.

I enjoy learning more about and presenting interesting aspects of physics, such as astronomy, nuclear energy, and the nature of time, to broader audiences.

Selected publications and scholarly presentations:

Relativistic Calculations for Photonuclear Reactions (I). The direct knockout mechanism, G.M. Lotz and H.S. Sherif, Nuclear Physics A537 (1992) 285.

Pion Contributions to Photonucleon Knockout, G. M. Lotz, Canadian Prairie Theoretical Physics Network Conference, University of Lethbridge, Lethbridge, Alberta, Canada, August 2010.

Physics of Time, Gerhard Lotz, Strathcona Composite High School Advanced Placement Conference, Edmonton, Alberta, March 6, 2010

Missile Defense is Still Science Fiction, Gerhard Lotz, Winnipeg Free Press column, October 18, 2006.

From Atoms to the UniverseColour Perspectives, Augustana theme faculty talk, Augustana Campus, Camrose, AB, Feb 27, 2017


AUPHY 120 - Introductory Physics

Oscillatory motion, waves on a string, sound waves, interference of waves, temperature, heat, entropy, first and second laws of thermodynamics, geometric optics, interference of light. Prerequisites: Mathematics 30-1.

AUPHY 250 - Electricity and Magnetism

Electric fields, Gauss's law, magnetic fields, Ampere's law, Faraday's law, induction, direct and alternating currents. Prerequisites: AUPHY 110 (2021) or AUPHY 120, and AUMAT 112.

AUPHY 270 - Astrophysics

The physics of the Universe. Observational methods. Stars, planetary systems, black holes, galaxies. Big Bang cosmology. Prerequisite: AUPHY 120.

AUPHY 391 - Advanced Laboratory I

Experiments in classical mechanics, electromagnetism, optics, and quantum mechanics. Measurement theory, experiment design and analysis, and scientific writing. Prerequisites: Any senior Physics course.

AUPHY 491 - Advanced Laboratory II

Experiments in classical mechanics, quantum mechanics, optics, and other senior physics topics. Prerequisite: AUPHY 391; consent of the instructor.

AUSCI 165 - Physics Laboratory

Introduction to the scientific process and experimental methods in physics. Hands-on experiments, spanning several branches of physics, will develop skills in experimental design, quantitative data analysis, experiment evaluation and scientific communication. Prerequisite: At least one of Biology 30, Chemistry 30, Physics 30, or Science 30.

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