Novak to Lead Instrument Shop

Giles Novak has been appointed as the new faculty director of the Tech Instrument Shop – Evanston for a three-year period beginning in June. In this position, Novak will directly oversee the shop, a full-service machining, fabrication and repair facility that has been supporting the research mission of the University for approximately 40 years. 
Among his responsibilities as faculty director, Novak will chair the faculty advisory committee, supervise staff and their professional development, lead fundraising efforts to expand the shop’s capabilities and services, and partner with the Office for Research to make strategic decisions to ensure its financial stability. 
The faculty advisory committee includes:
Giles Novak, physics and astronomy, committee chair
Michael Bedzyk, materials science and engineering
Kornel Ehmann, mechanical engineering
Matthew Grayson, electrical engineering and computer science
William Halperin, physics and astronomy
Elad Harel, chemistry
Harold Kung, chemical and biological engineering
Richard Van Duyne, chemistry
Gary Wojtowicz, facilities management
Novak is Professor of Physics and Astronomy, and his research is in the area of astrophysics and astrophysical instrumentation. His research group is currently building instrumentation for balloon-borne as well as high altitude ground-based telescopes, which they will use to observe cold Galactic clouds where new stars are forming. 
He received his PhD in physics from the University of Chicago in 1988, followed by postdoctoral research at the University of Massachusetts and Princeton University, before joining the faculty of Northwestern in 1993. 
Novak has served on the Kuiper Airborne Observatory User’s Group, SOFIA Science Steering Group, NASA-APRA and NSF astronomy division proposal review panels, and the National Science and Engineering Research Council Physics Evaluation Group of Canada. He was also the lead author of the SOFIA Design Reference Mission Case on “Magnetic Fields, Turbulence, and Star Formation.”
"The Instrument Shop performs a vital service to researchers,” says Novak, "not least because of the training it provides to graduate students who learn design skills via their interactions with the shop's experienced instrument builders."