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This Week at Physics

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Events on Friday, March 14th, 2014

Theory Seminar (High Energy/Cosmology)
Dark Matter: The Lepton Connection
Time: 2:00 pm
Place: 5280 Chamberlin Hall
Speaker: Prateek Agrawa, Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory
Abstract: I will present models where the dominant coupling of dark matter is with the Standard Model leptons, and the interactions with quarks only arise at one-loop level. These models give rise to novel phenomenology. In particular, I will show the corrections to the muon magnetic moment in the context of a set of simplified models, and compare the resulting constraints with those from direct detection and collider experiments. While these constraints are generally severe, I will highlight the limited regions of parameter space where the muon magnetic moment anomaly can be consistently explained by leptophilic dark matter.
Host: Jordi Salvadó Serra
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Physics Department Colloquium
Status and prospects for achieving thermonuclear ignition on the National Ignition Facility
Time: 3:30 pm
Place: 2241 Chamberlin Hall (coffee at 4:30 pm)
Speaker: Riccardo Betti, Rochester
Abstract: Recent experiments on the National Ignition Facility (NIF) have achieved the conditions where the thermonuclear fuel is self-heated by the alpha particles produced by the fusion process. For the first time in fusion research, the self-heating process causes a significant increase of the plasma temperature ( ~ 20 - 25 % ) and a large enhancement of the fusion yield, more than doubling the number of fusion reactions. Demonstrating ignition will require much higher fusion yields and dominant self-heating by the alphas. Current NIF experiments use the indirect drive approach where a cryogenic spherical shell filled with deuterium and tritium is imploded using an x-ray drive. While these results represent an important step forward in fusion research, the path to thermonuclear ignition is uncertain. Other concepts like direct drive and shock ignition provide additional options to achieve ignition on the NIF. While all the currently available ignition options are affected by major physics uncertainties, steady progress is being made on both the NIF and OMEGA laser facilities thus improving the prospects for the achievement of ignition on NIF.
Host: Forest
Poster: http://www.physics.wisc.edu/twap/posters/2014/3194.pdf
Video: http://www.physics.wisc.edu/vod/2014/03/14.html
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