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This Week at Physics

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Events on Friday, March 28th, 2014

Theory Seminar (High Energy/Cosmology)
The IceCube Puzzle
Time: 2:15 pm
Place: 5280
Speaker: Markus Ahlers, Wisconsin IceCube Particle Astrophysics Center
Abstract: Astrophysical neutrinos are unambiguous tracers of hadronic interactions of cosmic rays (CRs) in our Universe. With this in mind, high energy neutrino astronomy has long been anticipated to help uncover the orgin of high energy CRs. The recent detection of a flux of high-energy extra-terrestrial neutrinos by the IceCube Observatory is an important step in this direction. However, the low statistics and angular resolution of the signal makes an identification of the neutrino sources challenging. I will review various scenarios for the IceCube signal, ranging from exotic PeV dark matter decay to the more conventional candiate sources of high energy CRs. I will finally discuss various multi-messenger observations that can help us to solve the IceCube Puzzle.
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Physics Department Colloquium
Realism and the epistemic view of quantum states
Time: 3:30 pm
Place: 2241 Chamberlin Hall (coffee at 4:30 pm)
Speaker: Terry Rudolph
Abstract: The idea that quantum states reflect only an observers knowledge/beliefs/information about the world has a long history. The challenge for an advocate of this position, however, is to identify what we can deduce is "really going on'' out there. There seem to three main paths proponents of the epistemic view have followed in trying to extract such a narrative from quantum theory. I will explain how the most naïve such path--that quantum states can be associated with standard (probabilistic) uncertainty about some (arbitrary) real states of the world--is not tenable under some extremely mild assumptions about how any theory of reality must treat independent experiments. I will then overview the other two paths and what I see as the challenges they face.
Host: Yavuz
Poster: http://www.physics.wisc.edu/twap/posters/2014/3173.pdf
Video: http://www.physics.wisc.edu/vod/2014/03/28.html
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