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  • Sean Hartnoll, Stanford University, From String Theory to Exotic Materials and Back Again
    still ill understood high temperature superconductors and other exotic materials I will discuss some highlights from the rapidly developing two way connection between black hole physics and materials with technological applications Sean Hartnoll is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Physics at Stanford University He completed his undergraduate and graduate work at the University of Cambridge receiving his PhD from the Department of Applied Mathematics and Theoretical Physics He

    Original URL path: http://online.itp.ucsb.edu/online/plecture/shartnoll11/ (2015-11-01)
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  • Maria Spiropulu, CERN & Caltech, The Universe in Collisions
    Spiropulu is an experimental particle physicist Born and educated in Greece she became interested in experimental physics early on and worked in international laboratories in Europe BESSY CERN as an undergraduate She moved to the US in 1993 to pursue her Ph D at the Collider Detector at Fermilab with Harvard University She has worked on silicon sensors calorimetry trigger and data acquisition and on searches for physics beyond the standard model She used the blind data analysis method for the first time in hadron collider data She developed and implemented background determination methodologies and algorithms such as the Z boson standard candle and the W Z standard candle transfer for searches that have been used at Fermilab s experiments and are going to be employed by the experiments at the LHC By analyzing the debris of very high energy particle collisions she is looking to find whether extra dimensions or supersymmetric particles are relevant to the physics that connects the high energy scale of gravity and unification with the scale of elementary particle masses She is the recipient of the Enrico Fermi Fellowship and Compton Lectureship at the University of Chicago She lived in the Chicago area since 1994

    Original URL path: http://online.itp.ucsb.edu/online/plecture/spiropulu/ (2015-11-01)
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  • Michael Freedman, Microsoft Station Q, Topology, Physics, and Complexity: The Birthing of the Quantum Computer
    quantum computers do is Everything possible Topology is geometry after you have forgotten local details it deals with discrete structures In physics local detail is usually of paramount importance however there are rare low temperature systems whose most important properties are topological in nature The discrete nature of topology may allow us to control quantum mechanical evolutions in these systems with amazing precision This is just what quantum computation requires Michael H Freedman is a mathematician at Microsoft In 1986 he was awarded a Fields Medal for his work on the Poincaré conjecture one of the most famous problems of the 20th century Freedman was awarded a doctorate by Princeton University in 1973 After graduating he was appointed a lecturer in the Department of Mathematics at the University of California Berkeley In 1976 he was appointed professor in the Department of Mathematics at the University of California San Diego UCSD He was appointed the Charles Lee Powell chair of mathematics at UCSD in 1985 He has received numerous other awards and honors including Sloan and Guggenheim Fellowships a MacArthur Fellowship the National Medal of Science and the AMS Veblen Prize He is an elected member of the National Academy of

    Original URL path: http://online.itp.ucsb.edu/online/plecture/freedman/ (2015-11-01)
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  • W. Patrick McCray, UCSB, Citizen-Scientists and the Dawn of the Space Age
    of Moonwatch a program initiated by the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory in 1956 these amateur scientists contributed to what became the twentieth century s grandest science project Largely forgotten today Moonwatchers played a crucial role at the start of the Space Age McCray places their story within the context of 1950s Cold War culture and suggests how the public s passion for science might be stimulated once again W Patrick McCray a professor of history at the University of California Santa Barbara specializes in American science during the Cold War He is also a researcher at UCSB s Center for Nanotechnology in Society He received his Ph D from the University of Arizona in 1996 He is the author of the forthcoming book Keep Watching the Skies The Story of Operation Moonwatch and the Dawn of the Space Age to be published by Princeton University Press His other publications include Giant Telescopes Astronomical Ambition and the Promise of Technology Harvard University Press 2004 and Glassmaking in Renaissance Venice The Fragile Craft Ashgate Publishing 1999 Introduction by David Gross Begin streaming QuickTime of the whole talk high bandwidth Or right click to download the movie Or right click to download the podcast

    Original URL path: http://online.itp.ucsb.edu/online/plecture/mccray/ (2015-11-01)
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  • Nate Lewis, Caltech, Challenges for Global Energy
    needed to produce the required quantity of carbon free power by the 2050 timeframe triggering evaluations of the energy potential of renewable energy resources and revealing scientific challenges to cost effective production of carbon free power by the 2050 timeframe Dr Nathan Lewis George L Argyros Professor of Chemistry has been on the faculty at the California Institute of Technology since 1988 and has served as Professor since 1991 He has also served as the Principal Investigator of the Beckman Institute Molecular Materials Resource Center at Caltech since 1992 From 1981 to 1986 he was on the faculty at Stanford as an assistant professor from 1981 to 1985 and as a tenured Associate Professor from 1986 to 1988 Dr Lewis received his Ph D in Chemistry from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Dr Lewis has been an Alfred P Sloan Fellow a Camille and Henry Dreyfus Teacher Scholar and a Presidential Young Investigator He received the Fresenius Award in 1990 the ACS Award in Pure Chemistry in 1991 the Orton Memorial Lecture award in 2003 and the Princeton Environmental Award in 2003 He has published over 200 papers and has supervised approximately 50 graduate students and postdoctoral associates His research

    Original URL path: http://online.itp.ucsb.edu/online/plecture/lewis/ (2015-11-01)
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  • Robert Kirshner, Harvard University, Einstein's Blunder Undone: The Discovery of Cosmic Acceleration
    Einstein s greatest blunder though not by Einstein One of the great recent surprises in science is the astronomical discovery in 1998 that the expansion of the Universe is speeding up In this talk I will describe how we know the Universe is accelerating from the measurement of exploding stars The explanation for this accelerated expansion on the largest known scale is that it is driven by a mysterious dark energy which may be a result of fundamental forces acting on the smallest distances in nature In a strange turn of events the simplest form of the dark energy is something that looks very much like a modem version of Einstein s cosmological constant I will sketch the evidence for this strange new picture of the Universe and describe ongoing investigations that may reveal the nature of the dark energy Robert P Kirshner Clowes Professor of Science at Harvard University one of the world s leading astronomers and popular public lecturer on science and author of The Extravagant Universe Exploding Stars Dark Energy and the Accelerating Cosmos Kirshner is described by Discover Magazine as a raconteur of exceptional eloquence and by New Scientist as one of the liveliest and most

    Original URL path: http://online.itp.ucsb.edu/online/plecture/kirshner2/ (2015-11-01)
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  • Julian Nott, Intellectual Courage and Scientific Ballooning-- Exploring Landscapes Near & Far
    More balloons are flown today than at any time in history Tiny weather balloons make forecasting possible central to so much human activity At the opposite end of the spectrum vastly larger balloons are routinely flown today and for much longer periods than at any time in history At 120 000 feet so little of the atmosphere is left that it is possible to make many observations just as effectively as from satellites The instruments carried by some of these giant balloons are of special interest at KITP The Nobel Prize for physics announced in October 2006 was for measurements of the cosmic microwave background radiation made with the COBE satellite Precursor instruments for COBE were tested at the very top of the atmosphere under giant balloons before the satellite was launched Penzias and Wilson s discovery of the cosmic microwave background was first confirmed with an experiment carried under a huge balloon Experiments on cosmic rays antimatter searches etc are currently flown under giant balloons In addition to his own projects Nott s illustrated lecture covers these achievements the fascinating history of ballooning and the current wide application of balloons in science and technology Nott presents the history of ballooning as a microcosm of the history of science and technology and suggests that there are lessons of intellectual courage to be learned central to all major human advances and particularly to scientists exploring the greatest of the uncharted unknowns the future Julian Nott The Smithsonian Air and Space Museum has described Nott as the leading figure in applying modern science to manned balloon design over the last 20 years and he is the recipient of numbers of leading awards As well as designing and piloting numerous novel balloons he is extensively involved in scientific and commercial applications of balloons

    Original URL path: http://online.itp.ucsb.edu/online/plecture/nott/ (2015-11-01)
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  • Prof. Alain Karma, Northeastern, Bringing Order to Chaotic Hearts
    a fundamental understanding of electrical waves that propagate contraction through the main chambers of the heart These highly nonlinear waves behave quite differently from the linear waves that propagate sound or light Plane waves annihilate when they collide and can break up into rapidly rotating spiral shaped waves that are widely believed to cause fibrillation Furthermore wave propagation is governed by an electrical circuitry of bewieldering complexity at molecular cellular and tissue scales In this lecture I will review the rich scientific history that has lead to modern conceptualizations of fibrillation I will also discuss recent insights into wave dynamics from a physics perspective that offers new prospects to tame cardiac fibrillation and goes beyond the limitations of current therapies Alain Karma is a Professor of Physics and College of Arts and Sciences Distinguished Professor at Northeastern University as well as Interim Director of the Center for Interdisciplinary Research on Complex Systems Prior to joining Northeastern he received his PhD in Physics from the University of California at Santa Barbara in 1985 and subsequently held a 3 year postdoctoral appointment at the California Institute of Technology as a Weingart Research Fellow in Theoretical Physics His research focuses on theoretical understanding

    Original URL path: http://online.itp.ucsb.edu/online/plecture/karma/ (2015-11-01)
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