Events at Physics

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Events During the Week of October 4th through October 11th, 2020

Monday, October 5th, 2020

Plasma Physics (Physics/ECE/NE 922) Seminar
Core transport model validation towards building the physics basis for the SPARC tokamak
Time: 12:00 pm
Place: Zoom Meeting
Speaker: Pablo Rodriguez-Fernandez, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Abstract: The validation of turbulent transport simulations and integrated modeling frameworks is essential for the design of fusion devices that operate in unexplored burning plasma regimes. This talk presents work devoted to understanding the validity of the local transport approximation, widely used in current predictive frameworks. Cold-pulse experiments have long been considered strong evidence of the existence of dominant non-local effects in the core of tokamak plasmas, suggesting that the core transport models used to predict burning plasmas in SPARC and ITER would need to be revisited from the ground up. This work demonstrates that the complete behavior of such experiments can be recovered by a fully local turbulent transport model, as long as multi-channel stiff transport is considered. This provides confidence in the predictions of SPARC performance, revealing an ample margin to net fusion gain in a medium-size tokamak.

PAUL W TERRY is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting.

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Meeting ID: 991 5610 7574
Passcode: 883688

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Meeting ID: 991 5610 7574
Passcode: 883688
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Tuesday, October 6th, 2020

PGSC Professional Development Seminar
Time: 2:30 pm - 3:30 pm
Speaker: Michelle Holland, Physics Graduate Programs Coordinator
Abstract: Having an outstanding LinkedIn profile may be just the thing that gets you the job. Learn the latest tips and tricks to take your job search presence on LinkedIn to the next level. Join us for an interactive workshop and plan to spend some time polishing your LinkedIn profile. When your dream job comes up, you will be all set and ready to go!
Host: Michelle Holland, Graduate Program Coordinator
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Network in Neutrinos, Nuclear Astrophysics, and Symmetries (N3AS) Seminar
Properties of r-Process-Producing Neutron Star Mergers: What We Can Learn from Metal-Poor Stars
Time: 3:30 pm
Speaker: Erika Holmbeck , University of Notre Dame
Host: Baha Balantekin
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Wednesday, October 7th, 2020

Wisconsin Quantum Institute
CQE Seminar Series: Building the second quantum revolution by training Schrödinger cats, from very fat to very fast
Time: 11:00 am - 12:00 pm
Place: Virtual; contact for login info
Speaker: Tommaso Calarco, Institute for Quantum Control, Peter Grünberg Institute at Forschungszentrum Jülich
Abstract: Developing quantum technologies towards practical application requires exquisite control of the dynamics of multiqubit systems. Quantum optimal control offers a natural, and increasingly widespread, way to achieve this to the maximum possible extent. I will introduce the optimal control method we developed for quantum many-body systems and its remote closed-loop implementation RedCRAB, and I will report recent results we obtained with it in various physical contexts from diamond color centres to atoms in optical trap arrays, where we demonstrated optimal preparation of a 20-qubit GHZ state as well as single-atom spatial superposition states at the quantum speed limit. I will also put these specific efforts in the more global context of the European Quantum Technologies activities, including recent developments towards scientific cooperation with the US.
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Physics ∩ ML Seminar
Machine learning as a discovery tool in hep-th
Time: 11:00 am - 12:15 pm
Place: Please sign up at for this online event.
Speaker: Vishnu Jejjala, University of Witwatersrand
Abstract: Machine learning provides a new tool for analyzing Big Data and Small Data in mathematics and theoretical physics. In this talk, I discuss two case studies. The first predicts the volume of the knot complement of hyperbolic knots from the Jones polynomial. The second predicts the masses of baryons such as the proton and neutron from knowledge only of the meson spectrum and distinguishes between different composition hypotheses for exotic QCD resonances. Both investigations point to the existence of new analytic formulae.
Host: Gary Shiu
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Department Meeting
Time: 12:15 pm - 1:30 pm
Place: Virtual see "abstract" for connection info
Speaker: Sridhara Dasu, Department Chair, UW-Madison
Meeting Coordinates: Meeting number: 120 392 9242 Password: Q5EjaTz3Pk3 (75352893 from phones) Join by video system Dial You can also dial and enter your meeting number. Join by phone +1-415-655-0001 US Toll +1-312-535-8110 United States Toll (Chicago) Access code: 120 392 9242
Host: Sridhara Dasu, Department Chair
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Thursday, October 8th, 2020

Cosmology Journal Club
Time: 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
Abstract: Cosmology Journal Club is back! We will be having virtual meetings this semester.

Each week, we start with a couple scheduled 15 minute talks about one's research, or an arXiv paper. The last 30 minutes will typically be open to the group for anyone to discuss an arXiv paper.

All are welcome and all fields of cosmology are appropriate.

Contact Ross Cawthon, cawthon@wisc, for more information.

Zoom info
Meeting ID: 93592708053, passcode: cmbadger

Or click:
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Astronomy Colloquium
Particle acceleration by pressure anisotropy plasma instabilities: from black hole accretion disks to solar flares.
Time: 3:30 pm - 5:00 pm
Place: Zoom meeting(see Abstract ) Coffee and tea 3:30pm, Talk 3:45pm
Speaker: Mario Riquelme, University of Chile
Abstract: Pressure anisotropies naturally arise in weakly collisional plasmas, and are ultimately limited by the pitch-angle scattering provided by various kinetic plasma instabilities. I will present particle-in-cell (PIC) plasma simulations of these instabilities, and will show that, in some regimes, their scattering can be highly inelastic and produce significant nonthermal particle acceleration. The presentation will focus on two astrophysical plasma environments: i) sub-relativistic, weakly collisional accretion disks around black holes (e.g., Sgr A*), where both electron and ion acceleration will be considered, and ii) non-relativistic, low beta plasmas relevant for solar flares, where the case of electron acceleration will be analyzed. I will review the main evidence for the existence of particle acceleration in these systems, and will discuss the importance that pressure anisotropy instabilities can have in helping explain these fascinating acceleration phenomena.

Zoom Information

Meeting ID: 885 1389 6776

Passcode: 713070
Host: Professor Ellen Zweibel
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Friday, October 9th, 2020

Graduate Introductory Seminar (Physics 701)
Linking the theory and observation of astroparticles
Time: 12:05 pm - 12:55 pm
Place: BBCollaborate
Speaker: Ke Fang, UW Madison Department of Physics
Host: Sridhara Dasu
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Theory Seminar (High Energy/Cosmology)
Gravitational wave probes of axion-like particles
Time: 2:00 pm - 3:00 pm
Place: For zoom link, sign up at:
Speaker: Ben Stefanek, Mainz Institute for Theoretical Physics
Abstract: Conventional approaches to probing axions and axion-like particles (ALPs) typically rely on a coupling to photons. However, if this coupling is extremely weak, ALPs become invisible and are effectively decoupled from the Standard Model. Such particles, which are viable candidates for dark matter, can also produce a stochastic gravitational wave (GW) background in the early universe. This occurs if the axion couples to a dark gauge boson that experiences a tachyonic instability when the axion begins to oscillate. This instability exponentially amplifies vacuum fluctuations of a single dark photon helicity, resulting in a rapidly time-varying, anisotropic energy distribution that sources chiral GWs. We identify the regions of ALP parameter space which may be probed by future GW detectors, including ground- and space-based interferometers and pulsar timing arrays. Interestingly, these experiments have the ability to probe axions from the bottom up, i.e. in the very weakly coupled regime which is otherwise unconstrained. A smoking gun for the model is the completely chiral nature of the GW peak, which could be detected by LISA or Einstein Telescope if the signal amplitude is large.
Host: Lars Aalsma
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Department Coffee Hour
Time: 3:30 pm - 4:30 pm
Abstract: Join us weekly for an informal virtual coffee hour! Catch up with others in the department, tell us how things are going, and impress everyone with your Zoom background skills. Coffee Hour is open to any and all faculty, staff, and students in the department. Sometimes we have a topic, and we'll try to get that topic posted here in advance or sent out by email before each coffee hour.
Host: Department
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