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This Week at Physics

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Events During the Week of February 17th through February 24th, 2019

Sunday, February 17th, 2019

Wonders of Physics
Physics of the Periodic Table
Time: 1:00 pm
Place: 2103 Chamberlin
Speaker: Clint Sprott and others, UW Department of Physics
Abstract: This 36th annual fun-filled presentation of dramatic physics demonstrations is aimed at families and individuals. Free tickets are available from http://sprott.physics.wisc.edu/tickets.htm
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Wonders of Physics
Physics of the Periodic Table
Time: 4:00 pm
Place: 2103 Chamberlin
Speaker: Clint Sprott and others, UW Department of Physics
Abstract: This 36th annual fun-filled presentation of dramatic physics demonstrations is aimed at families and individuals. Free tickets are available from http://sprott.physics.wisc.edu/tickets.htm
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Wonders of Physics
Physics of the Periodic Table
Time: 7:00 pm
Place: 2103 Chamberlin
Speaker: Clint Sprott and others, UW Department of Physics
Abstract: This 36th annual fun-filled presentation of dramatic physics demonstrations is aimed at families and individuals. Free tickets are available from http://sprott.physics.wisc.edu/tickets.htm
Host: Clint Sprott
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Monday, February 18th, 2019

Plasma Physics (Physics/ECE/NE 922) Seminar
Energetic Particle Physics in the 3D Reversed-Field Pinch
Time: 12:05 pm
Place: 2241 Chamberlin Hall
Speaker: Philip Bonofiglo, UW-Madison
Abstract: The examination of fast ion behavior in 3D magnetic fields is of growing importance in fusion scenarios. In addition to applied 3D perturbations in the tokamak and the inherently 3D stellarator equilibrium, the RFP possesses the unique ability to spontaneously change from a 2D-axisymmetric equilibrium to a 3D-helical equilibrium known as quasi-single helicity. A helical axis forms when the innermost resonant tearing mode grows to an amplitude large enough to envelop the magnetic axis while the subdominant modes decrease in amplitude. The helical core results in a local reduction of the tearing-mode induced magnetic stochasticity characteristic of the standard RFP. Prior studies have shown that a strong thermal transport barrier develops. This work presents the first comprehensive study of fast ion behavior in this state. An investigation of fast ion transport due to energetic particle-driven Alfvénic instabilities, tearing-mode induced stochasticity, and neoclassical effects will be discussed.
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Physics Department Colloquium
Please note special date/time
Quantum Diamond Sensors
Time: 4:30 pm
Place: 2241 Chamberlin Hall
Speaker: Ron Walsworth, Harvard
Abstract: In recent years, optically probed nitrogen–vacancy (NV) quantum defects in diamond have become a leading modality for magnetic, electrical, and temperature sensing at short length scales (nanometers to millimeters) under ambient conditions. This technology has wide-ranging application across the physical and life sciences — from NMR spectroscopy at the scale of individual cells to improved biomedical diagnostics to the search for dark matter. I will provide an overview of quantum diamond sensors and their diverse applications.
Host: Mark Saffman
Video: https://vod.physics.wisc.edu/media/2019_02_18.m4v
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Tuesday, February 19th, 2019

Chaos & Complex Systems Seminar
Taming the energy of stars
Time: 12:05 pm
Place: 4274 Chamberlin (refreshments will be served)
Speaker: John Sarff, UW Department of Physics
Abstract: Nuclear fusion is one of the most important processes in the Universe. It caused the creation of the elements that form the Earth, and it continues to stir the evolution of matter. As a terrestrial energy source, it could forever supply the world's growing energy needs with reduced environmental impact. Despite decades of research, fusion power plants do not yet exist. This talk will provide an overview of the status and some of the basic challenges for terrestrial fusion power.
Host: Clint Sprott
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Wednesday, February 20th, 2019

No events scheduled

Thursday, February 21st, 2019

Cosmology Journal Club
Time: 12:00 pm
Place: 5242 Chamberlin Hall
Abstract: Please visit the following link for more details:
http://cmb.physics.wisc.edu/journal/index.html
Feel free to bring your lunch!
If you have questions or comments about this journal club, would like to propose a topic or volunteer to introduce a paper, please email Ross Cawthon (cawthon@wisc.edu) and Santanu Das (sdas33@wisc.edu).
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Theory Seminar (High Energy/Cosmology)
Gravity safe, electroweak natural axionic solution to strong CP and SUSY mu problems
Time: 2:30 pm
Place: 5280 Chamberlin Hall
Speaker: Howard Baer, University of Oklahoma
Abstract: Particle physics models with Peccei-Quinn (PQ) symmetry breaking as a consequence of supersymmetry (SUSY) breaking are attractive in that they solve the strong CP problem with a SUSY DFSZ-like axion, link the SUSY breaking and PQ breaking intermediate mass scales and can resolve the SUSY mu problem with a naturalness-required weak scale mu term whilst soft SUSY breaking terms inhabit the multi-TeV regime as required by LHC sparticle mass limits and the Higgs mass measurement.
On the negative ledger, models based on global symmetries suffer a generic gravity spoliation problem. We present two models based on the discrete R-symmetry Z_{24}^R-- which may emerge from compactification of 10-d Lorentzian spacetime in string theory-- where the mu term and dangerous proton decay and R-parity violating operators are either suppressed or forbidden while a gravity-safe PQ symmetry emerges as an accidental approximate global symmetry leading to a solution to the strong CP problem and a weak-scale/natural value for the mu term.
Host: Vernon Barger
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Astronomy Colloquium
Preparing for Earth 2.0: The Detailed Properties of Terrestrial Planets
Time: 3:30 pm
Place: 4421 Sterling Hall, Coffee and cookies 3:30 PM, Talk begins 3:45 PM
Speaker: Andrew Vanderburg, University of Texas
Abstract: Over the past thirty years, astronomers have made extraordinary progress in detecting planets around other stars. We now know that stars commonly host planets with a wider range of physical properties and system architectures than exist in our own solar system, and that planets likely outnumber stars in our galactic neighborhood. Now, planet detection technologies have advanced to the point where the direct detection of Earth-like exoplanets to search for biosignatures is within reach, and NASA is studying two space mission concepts with these goals in mind to potentially launch in the late 2030s. However, before this can happen, significant gaps in our knowledge of exoplanets must be covered so that these missions can be designed and their data can be interpreted. In my talk, I will describe work to fill in these gaps in our understanding of exoplanets. In particular, I will show how measurements of the bulk densities of small planets can constrain the planets' bulk composition and the presence of thick hydrogen/helium atmospheres. I will show how observations of white dwarf stars can reveal the elemental composition of rocky planets and the path towards using white dwarfs to learn about the compositional diversity of planets around other stars. Finally, I will show how modern artificial intelligence techniques can help measure precisely how common Earth analogs are, a crucial input parameter for designing missions to characterize Earth analogs.
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Friday, February 22nd, 2019

Physics Department Colloquium
Special Event: Blanchard Lecture
The arXiv: current status and future plans
Time: 3:30 pm
Place: 2241 Chamberlin Hall
Speaker: Steinn Sigurdsson, Penn State (arXiv Scientific Director)
Abstract: I will discuss the current status of the arXiv, the automated electronic archive and distribution server for research article preprints and related materials. After 25 years, the arXiv is the dominant provider of preprints of research articles to the mathematical and physical sciences. I will also discuss plans for extending the scope of arXiv and the implementation of the arXiv Next Generation, and talk about where the arXiv may to go next.
Host: Alex Levchenko
Video: https://vod.physics.wisc.edu/media/2019_02_22.m4v
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