Thursday, February 12, 2015
Zheng-Tian Lu, Argonne National Laboratory, University of Chicago
Title: "Atom Trap, Krypton-81, and Global Groundwater"
Thursday, February 19, 2015
Charles Kane, University of Pennsylvania
Title: “Topological Boundary Modes from Quantum Electronics to Classical Mechanics”
Host: Phuan Ong, Department of Physics, Princeton University
Thursday, March 5, 2015
There will be not be a colloquium on this date.
(Please note that the Sackler lecture will be at 8 p.m. with Daniel Eisenstein, professor of astronomy, Harvard University.)
Thursday, March 12, 2015
Per Helander, Max-Planck Institute for Plasma Physics, Greifswald, Germany
Title: "Theory of non-symmetric plasma confinement and a new large physics experiment in Germany"
The Princeton astrophysicist Lyman Spitzer famously figured out how a magnetic field can be used to confine a fully ionized plasma in steady state. His solution, the so-called stellarator, involves a counterintuitive twisting of the field without employing an electric current, and is mathematically related to the Berry phase in quantum mechanics. Six decades later, Spitzer’s idea is put to a billion-euro test in the Wendelstein 7-X experiment of the Max Planck Society. This talk will describe some basic physics and mathematics underpinning stellarators, including the use of “hidden symmetries” to improve plasma confinement. An overview will also be given of Wendelstein 7-X, which after a decade of construction work will start operating in mid-2015. If successful, it should produce steady-state plasmas under conditions suitable for extrapolation to a fusion reactor.
Host: Stewart Prager, Director, Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory
Thursday, March 26, 2015
Ali Yazdani, Princeton University
Title: "Spotting the elusive Majorana under the microscope"
Thursday, April 2, 2015
Cindy Regal, University of Colorado
Title: "Interferometry in a strong light"
Thursday, April 9, 2015
There will not be a colloquim on this date.
(Please note that the PCTS public lecture will be at 8 p.m., with Gavin Crooks, Lawrence Berkeley Labs. Host: Paul Steinhardt, Princteton Center for Theoretical Science)
Thursday, April 16, 2015
Pasquale Blasi, INAF - Arcetri Astrophysical Observatory, Florence, Italy
Title: "Cosmic Rays: A journey from accelerators to Earth"
The bulk of cosmic rays originate in the Milky Way, most likely in supernova explosions. I will discuss the physics aspects of the interaction between charged particles and the environment that are at the very basis of both particle acceleration and propagation throughout the Galaxy and beyond. While we learned a lot from recent cosmic ray and gamma ray observations, we are also being surprised by a bunch of new phenomena. I will discuss these recent developments and their implications for cosmic ray physics.