William W. Quivers

William W. Quivers

Associate Professor of Physics at Wellesley College

MLK Visiting Professor 1996-1997

Hosted by the Department of Physics

William Quivers (MIT SM ’73, PhD ’83) is Associate Professor of Physics at Wellesley College.


William Quivers is Associate Professor of Physics at Wellesley College. His research interests are: laser spectroscopy, effects of collisions on coherent processes in atoms, issues of race in science and medicine. 

Dr. Quivers holds a BS (1969) from Morehouse College, and both the MS (1972) and PhD (1982) in Physics from MIT. Dr. Quivers is a member of The 1861 Circle, a community of MIT alumni, parents, students, and friends who give to the Institute year in and year out. He is also member of the Scientific Research Society Sigma Xi. 

Since 1983, Dr. Quivers has been a faculty member at Wellesley, where he was tenured in 1989. At the time of his MIT appointment, Dr. Quivers was Chairman of Wellesley’s Department of Physics. MIT's Departmentof Physics hosted him during his return as an MLK Visiting Professor. 


Family Keeps `Eyes On The Prize'
​University Honors Leadership, Quest For Education

March 26, 1992 | By JANETTE RODRIGUES Daily Press

HAMPTON — Dr. William W. Quivers Sr. and his wife, Evelyn, raised their children to keep their ``eyes on the prize,'' whether it was getting through medical school or becoming a research scientist.

The patriarch and matriarch of a family of physicians/research scientists and educators, the Quivers have succeeded in their quest. Recently, the couple's efforts were recognized, and their family was named the 1992 Honored Black Family at the 14th Annual Black Family Conference sponsored by Hampton University.

The theme at this year's conference was ``Science and Technology in the 21st Century: How Will African Americans Fare?''

A former educator at Fisk University in Nashville, Tenn., Mrs. Quivers and her husband have worked at becoming the family they wanted to be when they decided to get married during World War II. At the time, they were both in the military and stationed at Tuskegee Army Air Field in Tuskegee, Ala.

Originally from Virginia, Quivers grew up in Phoebus. He and his wife met in - of all places - Wala Wala, Wash. Fresh out of Spelman College, Mrs. Quivers was in basic training at another base with her future husband's sister, the late Marguerite Quivers Clark.

``She used to talk about her brother to us,'' says Mrs. Quivers, who was reassigned to the same base Quivers was going to in Washington State. Mrs. Clark's matchmaking paid off.

The Quivers are now the parents of William W. Quivers Sr., a Morehouse College and Massachusetts Institute of Technology graduate who is a tenured professor of physics at Wellesley College in Massachusetts; Dr. Eric S. Quivers, a Morehouse College and Howard University School of Medicine graduate who is a practicing physician and researcher with the George Washington University Department of Pediatric Cardiology; and Celia A. Quivers, a Spelman College and Hampton University graduate who is an officer in the U.S. Navy, where she is serving in the Medical Service Corps in Bethesda, Md.

Quivers and his wife and their three children and two grandchildren all attended the conference, which included a keynote address by James W. Dyke Jr., secretary of education for Virginia.

The Quivers, who now reside in Baltimore, were chosen because the family exhibits strength of character and serves as a role model for others; displays an orientation to values and principles, which provide for a strong family unit; demonstrates a commitment to education and assists others in achieving academic leadership; displays outstanding leadership through participation in community services; and is active or has played a major role in a field of science or technology and has encouraged others to be involved in similar pursuits.

``They are the best parents anyone could have,'' says Celia Quivers, who has a master's degree in science and management from HU. Before entering the military, she taught at the university.

Mrs. Quivers smiled at her daughter, who was dressed in the dark blue uniform of a naval officer. ``She was the icing on the cake after two boys,'' she says with a laugh.


Direct measurement of velocity-changing collision cross sections by laser optical pumping

G Shimkaveg, WW Quivers Jr, RR Dasari, MS Feld - Physical Review A, 1993 - APS
Abstract We extend the theory of velocity-selective laser optical pumping in atomic vapors, 
allowing for arbitrarily rapid velocity-changing collisional rates. The results yield a simple 
relationship between the line-shape areas of narrow spectroscopic features present in ...

Sub-doppler nuclear detection of laser-induced orientation of Rb m 85

…, JT Hutton, DE Murnick, M Otteson, WW Quivers Jr… - Physical review …, 1991 - APS
Abstract Using laser-induced nuclear-orientation and optical-saturation techniques, we have 
produced sub-Doppler changes in the anisotropy of the angular distribution of the 514-keV γ 
rays from the 1-μs isomer Rb m 85. This permits high-resolution measurements of D1 and ...

Laser-induced nuclear orientation studies of 1-μs< sup> 85m Rb

G Shimkaveg, WW Quivers Jr, RR Dasari… - … Acta Part A: Molecular …, 1989 - Elsevier
Abstract We have conducted a series of laser-induced nuclear orientation (LINO) 
experiments with the 1-μs nuclear isomer of 85 Rb (85m Rb at 514 keV), and present here, 
along with the results, a quantitative model of the physical processes occurring in the 85m ...

Laser applications to fundamental weak interaction studies

JT Hutton, WW Quivers Jr - Physical Review C, 1989 - APS
applications to fundamental weak interaction studies J.T. Hutton and WW Quivers,
Jr. * George R. Harrison Spectroscopy Laboratory, Massachusetts ...
Complete Doppler coverage in laser optical pumping by wall-induced velocity-changing collisions
…, AP Ghosh, D Heinzen, X Zhu, WW Quivers Jr… - Physical Review A, 1986 - APS
Abstract Enhanced Doppler coverage has been observed in the laser-induced optical 
pumping of low-density rubidium vapor in the absence of any buffer gas. Transient and 
steady-state measurements show that this enhancement arises from velocity-changing ...

Production of highly polarized vapors using laser optical pumping with velocity-changing collisions

WW Quivers Jr - Physical Review A, 1986 - APS
Abstract Experiments have shown the novel combination of laser optical pumping and 
velocity-changing collisions (between active-and buffer-gas atoms) to be very effective in 
producing vapors with high atomic or nuclear polarizations. This paper presents a theory ...

Nuclear moments of/sup 85m/Rb measured by using laser-induced nuclear orientation

…, G Shimkaveg, D Smith, WW Quivers Jr… - Nuclei off the line of …, 1985 - inis.iaea.org
Laser induced gamma ray anisotropy is used to obtain the D/sub 1/hyperfine (hf) structure of 
the 1 μsec isomer/sup 85m/Rb. An isomer shift of-52+-9 MHz relative to/sup 85/Rb, and a 
nuclear magnetic dipole moment of (6.046+-0.010) μ/sub n/has been obtained. ...

Laser-Induced Nuclear Orientation of 1-μs Rb m 85

G Shimkaveg, WW Quivers Jr, RR Dasari… - Physical Review Letters, 1984 - APS
Abstract Frequency-resolved laser-induced gamma-ray anisotropy has been achieved and 
used to measure the D 1 hyperfine structure of the 1-μs isomer Rb m 85. The magnetic 
dipole moment obtained is (6.046±0. 0 1 0) μ N and the isomer shift relative to Rb 85 is— ...

Polarized sodium nuclei produced by laser optical pumping with velocity changing collisions

PG Pappas, RA Forber, WW Quivers Jr, RR Dasari… - Physical Review Letters, 1981 - APS
Abstract Theoretical and experimental studies of nuclear polarization induced by single-
mode—laser optical pumping are reported. The nuclear polarization is shown to depend on 
the product of laser intensity and buffer-gas pressure. In Na 23 it approaches one at ...

Transit-time effects in optically pumped coupled three-level systems

JE Thomas, WW Quivers Jr - Physical Review A, 1980 - APS
Abstract A density-matrix calculation of the line shape for an optically pumped coupled three-
level system subjected to two traveling wave-laser fields with Gaussian intensity profiles is 
presented to third-order in perturbation theory. A closed-form expression for the line shape ...