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This Week at Physics

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Events on Tuesday, November 12th, 2013

Chaos & Complex Systems Seminar
Tutankhamun's Chariots, Stunt-Kite Ballet, and the Exodus (Chaos Choreography and Modeling)
Time: 12:05 pm
Place: 4274 Chamberlin (refreshments will be served)
Speaker: Bela Sandor, UW Department of Engineering Physics
Abstract: What might have happened at the Red Sea between Moses and Pharaoh, if the Exodus story is at least partially true? Who was Pharaoh? What did he drive, and how, befitting a super-athletic warrior king? My discovery process combines diverse methods and tools, and gives ideas for future work: aEurocent Analysis of ancient hardware and art; chariot replication and field testing for the NOVA documentary aEurooeBuilding PharaohaEuroTMs ChariotaEuro (original airing Feb. 6, 2013). aEurocent Statics and dynamics (including an important abstract concept that Newton missed, though the ancients understood it). Modeling structural dynamics and integrity; time-dependent material behaviors; sophisticated wheels, suspensions, joints, and a dual-function anti-roll mechanism. aEurocent Chaos choreography in BethellaEuroTMs system of controlling multiple stunt kites, which are sensitive to small changes in stimulation; the method would allow measurements of force vectors at handles and the resulting agent dynamics. aEurocent Chaos choreography in high-speed pharaonic war games, with one person handling two horses and two different weapons in a burst event; did Pharaoh use this technique in the Exodus scene? Consider a clear view of all handles and corresponding agents. aEurocent Human factors: Was Pharaoh playing a chaos experiment?
Host: Clint Sprott
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NPAC (Nuclear/Particle/Astro/Cosmo) Forum
A multi-messenger quest for the sources of the highest energy cosmic rays
Time: 2:30 pm
Place: 4274 Chamberlin Hall
Speaker: Foteini Oikonomou, UCL
Abstract: The origin of ultra high energy cosmic rays (UHECRs) remains unknown despite decades of experimental and theoretical research; their discovery will bring to light the nature of the Universe's most violent accelerators. In this talk I will discuss the observable signatures of UHECRs that can be used to constrain the nature and distribution of their yet unknown sources, focusing on the constraints imposed by the arrival direction distribution of the highest energy cosmic rays detected at the Pierre Auger observatory in Argentina. Constraints on the sources of UHECRs may also come from the secondary particles (gamma-rays and neutrinos) that UHECRs produce during their propagation. I will present the results of a search for the signatures of UHECR acceleration in the gamma-ray spectra of blazars and discuss the implications for the detectability of such signatures with current and upcoming gamma-ray instruments.
Host: Markus Ahlers
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