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Will H. Flanagan, Ph.D.

Dr. Will H. Flanagan received his undergraduate education at the University of Colorado at Boulder. Lured from astronomy research by the fascinating connection between cosmology and particle physics, he began doing Large Hadron Collider (LHC) phenomenology at Texas A&M through a summer Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) internship. He then returned to Colorado to begin research with the Compact Muon Solenoid (CMS) detector as the LHC became operational.

Upon graduation, he moved to Texas A&M to complete a Ph.D., looking for supersymmetric dark matter particles produced through weak boson fusion. He moved to the dynamic field of neutrino physics during postdoctoral work at the University of Texas at Austin. During this time, he found a love for tinkering with particle detectors and mentoring undergraduate research.
All of the projects being conducted by Dr. Flanagan’s group, whether at Fermilab, CERN, or a nearby nuclear reactor, share a common thread of building the latest and greatest particle detectors.

In spring 2020, he was  awarded a $450,000 contract from the Air Force for his work in developing the world’s smallest neutron detector. Of this grant, $135,000 will go to UD to support Flanagan’s work with undergraduate physics students in the Physics Department at UD; the remainder will go to the small business colleagues in Austin with whom the UD team is collaborating.   Learn more here.

Areas of Expertise

Neutrino Physics


Ph.D. Physics - Texas A&M (2014)
BA Physics, BA Mathematics - University of Colorado (2010)


Professional Experience

Postdoctoral Fellow, UT Austin, 2014-2017

Research Interests

Neutrino Physics

Selected Publications

  • MINER Collaboration, Background Studies for the MINER Coherent Neutrino Scattering Reactor Experiment, NIM A 853, 53–60 (2017).
  • CMS Collaboration, Search for Dark Matter and Supersymmetry with a Compressed Mass Spectrum in the Vector Boson Fusion Topology in Proton-Proton Collisions at sqrt(s)=8 TeV, PRL 118, 021802 (2017).
  • MINOS Collaboration, Constraints on Large Extra Dimensions from the MINOS Experiment, PRD 94, 111101 (2016).
  • MINOS Collaboration, A search for sterile neutrinos mixing with muon neutrinos in MINOS, PRL 117, 151803 (2016).
  • MINOS and Daya Bay Collaborations, Limits on Active to Sterile Neutrino Oscillations from Disappearance Searches in the MINOS, Daya Bay, and Bugey-3 Experiments, PRL 117, 151801 (2016).
  • CMS Collaboration, Search for supersymmetry in the vector-boson fusion topology in proton-proton collisions at sqrt(s) = 8TeV. JHEP 11, 189 (2015).
  • Dutta B., Flanagan W., Gurrola A., Johns W., Kamon T., Sheldon P., Sinha K., Wang K., Wu S., Probing Compressed Top Squarks at the LHC at 14 TeV. PRD 90, 095022 (2014).


  • International Workshop for the Next Generation Nucleon Decay and Neutrino Detector (NNN15). `ArgoNeuT and LArIAT: Status and Progress on Measurements Relevant for DUNE'. October 2015,

Awards & Honors

  • Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory, URA Visiting Scholar, Summer 2017
  • Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory, Neutrino Physics Center Fellow, Fall 2016
  • Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory, LHC Physics Center Graduate Scholar, September-October 2013
  • Texas A\&M Division of Research and Graduate Studies, Graduate Merit Fellow 2010-2012