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Dr. Scott Nutter Honored as Regents Professor 


Dr. Nutter and the ISS-CREAM instrument during assembly at Wallops Flight Facility.


April 13, 2020— Northern Kentucky University celebrates Dr. Scott Nutter with the Regents Professorship, recognizing his scholarly achievements and contribution to the university’s core values.

Dr. Nutter is a professor of Physics at NKU. An astrophysicist, he has collaborated on several NASA-sponsored experiments investigating cosmic rays for the last three decades. These projects involve sending instruments into space, either on high-altitude balloons or on the International Space Station, with future plans to place detectors on Earth-orbiting satellites.

“It’s a pleasure to announce Scott as the university’s next Regents Professor. His record of scholarship is exceptional, and his work continues to inspire our students to flourish outside of the classroom,” said Provost Sue Ott Rowlands.

Dr. Nutter holds leadership roles in collaborations with researchers across domestic and international institutions. He is a member of an international scientific team that developed the ISS-CREAM instrument (Cosmic Ray Energetics and Mass for the International Space Station) launched by NASA in August 2017. Dr. Nutter began receiving NASA funding for this project over 10 years ago to convert an earlier balloon-borne experiment into a version that can function in space on the International Space Station.  

“It’s truly an honor to receive this award,” said Dr. Nutter. “I’m grateful for all the faculty, staff and students who have supported my efforts over the years. NKU students play a critical role in the success of these projects. The NKU administration has bent over backwards to enable me to meet my responsibilities, whether facilitating my extended travel to Antarctica for balloon launches or being flexible with my teaching schedule.”

NKU students participate in designing, building, and testing cosmic ray detectors and in analyzing flight data. They have had the chance to travel all over the globe, including to South Korea and the particle accelerator at CERN in Geneva, Switzerland. Dr. Nutter presents his results regularly at international conferences.

Dr. Nutter earned his B.A. Mathematics from the University of Georgia, and both his M.S. and Ph.D. in Physics from Indiana University. He previously taught at Penn State University and Eastern New Mexico University before joining NKU in 2001.

About NKU: Founded in 1968, we are a growing metropolitan university of more than 14,000 students served by more than 2,000 faculty and staff on a thriving suburban campus near Cincinnati. Located in the quiet suburb of Highland Heights, Kentucky—just seven miles southeast of Cincinnati—we have become a leader in Greater Cincinnati and Kentucky by providing a private school education for a fraction of the cost. While we are one of the fastest growing universities in Kentucky, our professors still know our students' names. For more information, visit