Events at Physics

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Events on Tuesday, September 14th, 2010

Chaos & Complex Systems Seminar
Designing Climate Change Solutions
Time: 12:05 pm
Place: 4274 Chamberlin Hall
Speaker: Tracey Holloway, UW Department of Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences
Abstract: Climate change is affected by almost every sector of the economy and society (transportation, electricity, consumption, food, agriculture, land use, manufacturing, etc.). Similarly, the impacts of climate change affect these same systems (extreme weather, seasonal shifts, agricultural vulnerability, infrastructure, public health, coastal areas, etc.). So, the options for mitigating - reducing emissions of CO2 and other greenhouse gases - or adapting - reducing vulnerability of systems - are almost limitless. For the third year in a row, the SAGE (the Center for Sustainability and the Global Environment in the Nelson Institute) hosts the largest student environmental innovation competition in the world: the Climate Leadership Challenge (CLC). The CLC focuses on innovative, scaleable solutions to climate change. In 2011, the CLC will again be awarding a $50,000 grand prize to a student team interested in advancing a climate solution. This talk will discuss climate change mitigation and adaptation broadly, success stories, and opportunities for students to compete this year.
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Special Astronomy Colloquium Talk
The Transiting Extrasolar Planets - A vehicle to learn new features about extrasolar systems
Time: 3:30 pm - 5:00 pm
Place: 4421 Sterling Hall Same Location
Speaker: Tsevi Mazeh, Tel Aviv University
Abstract: About 100 of the known extrasolar planets eclipse their parent star once every orbital period. The detection of these transiting planets in the last few years allowed the derivation of the planetary masses and radii, some of the parent star obliquity and sometimes even the planetary temperatures and atmospherical features. The talk will review the detection and study of the presently known transiting planets, and will point out how the new systems are different from our own solar system.

The new era of studying transiting planets from space by CoRoT and Kepler allows detection of minute modulations, with amplitudes of the order of 10's ppm (parts per million). I will discuss a recent detection of the ellipsoidal and the relativistic beaming effects in the lightcurve of CoRoT-3.
Host: Robert Mathieu
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