Physics and Astronomy Colloquia

*Fall Quarter Colloquia Start at 4:00 pm*

Title: High-precision physics and chemistry with ultracold diatomic molecules

Speaker: Tanya Zelevinsky


Abstract: Simple molecules at ultracold temperatures can now be manipulated with quantum optical techniques that have been developed for atomic gases. The molecules, however, present us with profoundly distinctive properties, many of which arise from their higher density of states. Furthermore, molecules can be sensitive to different aspects of fundamental physical laws than atoms are. Here we show how a combination of molecular spectroscopy in the style of optical atomic clocks and modern quantum chemistry explain many bizarre properties of loosely bound molecules, shed light on the quantum aspects of the most basic chemical reactions, and promise to advance table-top fundamental physics in new directions.

Host: Brian Odom

Speaker Schedule

Keywords: Physics, Astronomy, colloquium


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Abigail Vieregg: TBA

January 13, 2017, 4:00 PM - 5:00 PM

Title: TBA

Speaker: Abigail Vieregg, University of Chicago


Abstract: TBA

Host: Mel Ulmer

Speaker Schedule

Keywords: Physics, Astronomy, colloquium


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Joel Brock: TBA

January 20, 2017, 4:00 PM - 5:00 PM

Title: TBA

Speaker: Joel Brock, Cornell University 

Abstract: TBA

Host: Bedzyk

Speaker Schedule

Keywords: Physics, Astronomy, colloquium


Title: Chemical structures in planet-forming disks

Speaker: Karin Oberg, Harvard Smithsonian 

Abstract: Exo-planets are common, and they span a large range of compositions. The origins of this compositional diversity are largely unconstrained. Among planets that are Earth-like, a second question is how often such planets form hospitable to life. A fraction of exo-planets are observed to be ‘physically habitable’, i.e. of the right temperature and bulk composition to sustain a water-based prebiotic chemistry. This does not automatically imply, however, that they are rich in the building blocks of life, in organic molecules of different sizes and kinds, i.e. that they are chemically habitable. In this talk I will argue that characterizing the chemistry of protoplanetary disks, the formation sites of planets, is key to address both the origins of planetary bulk compositions and the likelihood of finding organic matter on planets. The most direct path to constrain the chemistry in disks is to directly observe it. In the age of ALMA it is for the first time possible to image the chemistry of planet formation, to determine locations of disk snowlines, and to map the distributions of different organic molecules. Recent ALMA highlights include constraints on CO snowline locations, the discovery of spectacular chemical ring systems, and first detections of more complex organic molecules. Observations can only provide chemical snapshots, however, and even ALMA is blind to the majority of the chemistry that shapes planet formation. To interpret observations and address the full chemical complexity in disks requires models, both toy models and astrochemical simulations. These models in turn must be informed by laboratory experiments, some of which will be shown in this talk. It is thus only when we combine observational, theoretical and experimental constraints that we can hope to characterize the chemistry of disks, and further, the chemical compositions of nascent planets.

Host: Ulmer

Speaker Schedule

Keywords: Physics, Astronomy, colloquium


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Ruth Van De Water: TBA

February 3, 2017, 4:00 PM - 5:00 PM

Title: TBA

Speaker: Ruth Van De Water, Fermilab

Abstract: TBA

Host: Andre

Speaker Schedule

Keywords: Physics, Astronomy, colloquium


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Mohammed Hafezi: TBA

February 17, 2017, 4:00 PM - 5:00 PM

Title: TBA

Speaker: Mohammed Hafezi, University of Maryland

Abstract: TBA

Host: Koch

Speaker Schedule

Keywords: Physics, Astronomy, colloquium


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Michael Perryman: TBA

February 24, 2017, 4:00 PM - 5:00 PM

Title: TBA

Speaker: Michael Perryman

Abstract: TBA

Host: Lithwick

Speaker Schedule

Keywords: Physics, Astronomy, colloquium


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Vincenzo Cirigliano: TBA

March 3, 2017, 4:00 PM - 5:00 PM

Title: TBA

Speaker: Vincenzo Cirigliano, Los Alamos National Laboratory

Abstract: TBA

Host: Andre

Speaker Schedule

Keywords: Physics, Astronomy, colloquium


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Yuval Grossman: TBA

March 31, 2017, 4:00 PM - 5:00 PM

Title: TBA

Speaker: Yuval Grossman, Cornell University 

Abstract: TBA

Host: Andre

Speaker Schedule

Keywords: Physics, Astronomy, colloquium


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Dirk Englund: TBA

April 7, 2017, 4:00 PM - 5:00 PM

Title: TBA

Speaker: Dirk Englund, MIT


Abstract: TBA

Host: Koch

Speaker Schedule

Keywords: Physics, Astronomy, colloquium


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Martin Zweirlein: TBA

April 14, 2017, 4:00 PM - 5:00 PM

Title: TBA

Speaker: Martin Zweirlein, MIT


Abstract: TBA

Host: Halperin/Garg

Speaker Schedule

Keywords: Physics, Astronomy, colloquium


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Steve Girvin: TBA

April 21, 2017, 4:00 PM - 5:00 PM

Title: TBA

Speaker: Steve Girvin, Yale

Abstract: TBA

Host: Koch

Speaker Schedule

Keywords: Physics, Astronomy, colloquium


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Dave Arnett: TBA

April 28, 2017, 4:00 PM - 5:00 PM

Title: TBA

Speaker: Dave Arnett, University of Arizona


Abstract: TBA

Host: Kalogera

Speaker Schedule

Keywords: Physics, Astronomy, colloquium


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Robert Boyd: TBA

May 5, 2017, 4:00 PM - 5:00 PM

Title: TBA

Speaker: Robert Boyd

Abstract: TBA

Host: Selim

Speaker Schedule

Keywords: Physics, Astronomy, colloquium


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Maxim Popselov: TBA

May 12, 2017, 4:00 PM - 5:00 PM

Title: TBA

Speaker: Maxim Popselov, Perimeter

Abstract: TBA

Host: Andre

Speaker Schedule

Keywords: Physics, Astronomy, colloquium


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Laura Newburgh: TBA

May 19, 2017, 4:00 PM - 5:00 PM

Title: TBA

Speaker: Laura Newburgh, Yale

Abstract: TBA

Host: Ulmer

Speaker Schedule

Keywords: Physics, Astronomy, colloquium


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Neil Kelleher: TBA

May 26, 2017, 4:00 PM - 5:00 PM

Title: TBA

Speaker: Neil Kelleher, Northwestern University

Abstract: TBA

Host: Ulmer

Speaker Schedule

Keywords: Physics, Astronomy, colloquium