Teacher Spotlight – Dr. Konstantin Kabin
Written by: 25594 Marina Lowthian
When you walk into Dr. Konstantin Kabin’s office, what you observe is a large desk piled high with Physics documents. To your left, is a bookshelf filled with material on Astrodynamics, Space Science, Statistical Physics, and his favourite- Computational Physics. To your right, just beside the door is an analog clock, on which there are no numbers but instead Greek mathematical symbols, and in the middle, where the clock hands meet, lie Maxwell’s equations of electromagnetism.
Dr. Kabin has been a professor in RMC’s Space Science and Physics faculty for two years now. He currently teaches Statistical and Thermal Physics as well as Computational Physics to 3rd and 4th year students in the Space Science/Physics program. His own research and studies are focused on dynamics of space plasmas, the magnetosphere, and geomagnetic storms- those only being a small sample of the topics he pursues in the field of space science.
Originally from the Ukraine, Dr. Kabin received his Master’s in Aerospace Engineering at the Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology. Through a ‘chain of accidents’, as he describes it, Dr. Kabin came to the States, where he earned his PhD in Space Science at the University of Michigan. After yet another chain of accidents, Dr. Kabin began teaching at UBC in Vancouver, and then in Edmonton after that. Having visited RMC a few times over those few years, Dr. Kabin applied to the College, admiring its campus, historical traditions, and small class sizes. At RMC, he feels he is making a larger difference in the lives of students than he would at any other university.
Of course, like any other scientist, Dr. Kabin does not spend all of his time exploring the depths of the Universe. He takes great pleasure in literature and fiction, naming authors such as Mark Twain and Russians Boris and Arkady Strugatsky- who together authored what Dr Kabin calls ‘the Russian version of Harry Potter’, a novel titled Monday begins on Saturday. If you sit in on one of Dr. Kabin’s classes, you are almost certain to hear him drop an obscure quote from historical figures.
When asked what he likes to do with his spare time, Dr. Kabin grins, explaining he has two very young children at home. However, he does enjoy the outdoor pleasures of nature and hiking. He notes that he knows how to ballroom dance- he says it with a smile as that is where he met his wife.
To RMC cadets, Dr. Kabin suggests they enjoy their time at RMC. “It is one of those places where you’ll be coming back here for the rest of your life”.
As we wrap up the interview on a Friday afternoon after a long week of classes, Dr. Kabin looks at his clock and says ‘Well it’s halfway to lambda, so time to go home”.