Scott Heinekamp

Professor of Physics

Coordinator of 3/2 Engineering Program

Adjunct Professor of Applied and Engineering Physics, Cornell University

Stratton 302


Scott Heinekamp

"My students and I agree that physics deals with very interesting questions, and that it has developed powerful tools for understanding nature at a deep level. We don't pursue physics because it's easy, or because it necessarily leads to lucrative careers, or because it's trendy. We're drawn to it because of the challenges it poses and because its success in describing the physical world is always exciting and, often enough, positively galvanizing."

Physics is an experimental science, driven by human interaction, backed up by provable and mathematically self-consistent theory. Professor Heinekamp tries to emphasize both aspects in his teaching. In his research, he strives to learn more about experimental techniques in collaboration with scientists doing x-ray diffraction work at Cornell University.


1975 B.S. Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Physics
1979 M.S. Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Physics
1985 Ph.D. Brown University, Physics

Select Publications

Heinekamp, S. "Diffraction Patterns of Tilted Smectic Liquid Crystal Phases" (in progress).

Heinekamp, S. & Pelcovits, R. "Spin-Correlation Function in the Two-Dimensional XY Model." Physics Review B 32 (1985): 4528 – 4538.

Heinekamp, S. & Pelcovits, R. "Dynamics of the Smectic-C to -A Transition in Freely Suspended Thin Films." Physics Review A 32 (1985): 2506 - 2509.

Heinekamp, S., Pelcovits, R., Fontes, E., Chen, E.Y., Pindak, R., and
Meyer, R.B. "Smectic-C* to Smectic-A Transition in Variable-Thickness
Liquid-Crystal Films: Order-Parameter Measurements and Theory." Physics Review Lett. 52 (1984): 1017 – 1020.

Courses Taught

  • Fundamentals of Physics I, II, & III (lecture and lab)
  • Principles of Electronics (lecture and lab)
  • Modern Physics
  • Introductory Astronomy (lecture and lab)
  • Classical Mechanics
  • First-Year Experience: Approaches to the Liberal Arts
  • Junior-Level Electricity & Magnetism (Cornell University)