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Events on Thursday, March 17th, 2016

Cosmology Journal Club
An Informal discussion about a broad variety of arXiv papers related to Cosmology
Time: 12:15 pm - 1:15 pm
Place: 5242 Chamberlin Hall
Abstract: Please visit the following link for more details:
Please 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 Amol Upadhye (
Host: Amol Upadhye
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Astronomy Colloquium
The Role of Dwarf-Dwarf Galaxy Interactions in Galaxy Assembly
Time: 3:30 pm - 5:00 pm
Place: 4421 Sterling Hall, Coffee and cookies at 3:30 PM, Talk at 3:45 PM
Speaker: Sabrina Stierwalt, NRAO
Abstract: Massive galaxy mergers are an important mode of galaxy evolution and are observed to inspire intense starbursts, the growth of AGN,and significant rearranging of the galaxies' gas and dust. However, despite the fact that the majority of mergers at all epochs occur among low mass galaxies, whether these effects occur in the shallow gravitational potential wells of dwarf galaxies remains mostly uncharted territory. Mergers at low redshift in particular offer a high resolution look at a process that set the stage for galaxy assembly at earlier epochs when such low metallicity mergers were more frequent. I will present initial results and future plans for TiNy Titans, the first systematic study of a sample of interacting dwarf galaxies and the mechanisms governing their star formation and subsequent processing of the ISM. We find multi-wavelength evidence based on star formation rates, gas and dust content that mergers proceed substantially differently at low masses. Our survey further uncovers galaxy groups with only low-mass members, a discovery that appears to contradict predictions of structure formation from hydrodynamic cosmological simulations.
Host: Snezana Stanimirovic
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Physics Department Colloquium
From Bell's inequalities to quantum information: a new quantum revolution
Time: 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Place: 2241 Chamberlin Hall (coffee at 3:45 pm)
Speaker: Alain Aspect, CNRS, Institut d’Optique
Abstract: In 1935, with co-authors Podolsky and Rosen, Einstein discovered an intriguing quantum situation, in which particles in a pair are so strongly correlated that Schrödinger called them “entangled”. By analyzing that situation, Einstein concluded that the quantum formalism is incomplete. Niels Bohr immediately opposed that conclusion, and the debate lasted until the death of these two giants of physics. 

Thirty years later, John Stuart Bell discovered that it is possible to settle the debate experimentally, by testing the famous "Bell's inequalities", and to show directly that the revolutionary concept of entanglement is indeed a reality. 

A long series of experiments closer and closer to the ideal scheme proposed by Bell has confirmed that entanglement is indeed "a great quantum mystery", to use the words of Feynman.

Based on that concept, a new field of research has emerged, quantum information, where one uses quantum bits, the so-called “qubits”, to encode the information and process it. Entanglement between qubits enables conceptually new methods for processing and transmitting information. Large-scale practical implementation of such concepts might revolutionize our society, as did the laser, the transistor and integrated circuits, some of the most striking fruits of the first quantum revolution, which began with the 20th century. To cite only the simplest example of these new concepts, quantum cryptography allows one to guarantee an absolute privacy of communications, based on the most fundamental laws of quantum mechanics.
Host: Thad Walker
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