Events at Physics

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Events During the Week of October 31st through November 7th, 2021

Monday, November 1st, 2021

No events scheduled

Tuesday, November 2nd, 2021

Network in Neutrinos, Nuclear Astrophysics, and Symmetries (N3AS) Seminar
Time: 2:00 pm
Speaker: Daniel Finstad , 2021 PFC fellow talk
Host: Baha Balantekin
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Council Meeting
Time: 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Place: 2314 Chamberlin
Speaker: Mark Eriksson, UW-Madison, Department of Physics
Host: Mark Eriksson
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Theory Seminar (High Energy/Cosmology)
General Solutions to Gauge Anomaly Equations
Time: 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Place: Chamberlin 5280
Speaker: Bogdan Dobrescu, Fermilab
Abstract: A long-standing problem in particle physics is how to identify anomaly-free sets of chiral fermions charged under one or more U(1) gauge symmetries. I will present the general solution to the anomaly equations for any number of fermions charged under a single U(1). Then I will discuss the general solution for six fermions charged under a U(1)XU(1) gauge group, and give an example of a dark matter model based on that solution. Finally, in U(1) extensions of the Standard Model, I will derive the general set of charges for three right-handed neutrinos.
Host: Lars Aalsma
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Wednesday, November 3rd, 2021

Physics ∩ ML Seminar
Self-Supervised Learning of Generative Spin-Glasses with Normalizing Flows
Time: 11:00 am - 12:15 pm
Place: Chamberlin 5280 (Zoom link also available for online participants who signed up on our mailing list)
Speaker: Gavin Hartnett, RAND
Abstract: Spin-glasses are universal models that can capture complex behavior of many-body systems at the interface of statistical physics and computer science, including discrete optimization, inference in graphical models, and automated reasoning. In this talk, I will discuss the problem of using normalizing flows to build generative models of spin-glasses. I will begin with a brief introduction to spin-glasses, and then discuss how the Hubbard-Stratonovich transformation may be used to convert the discrete Boltzmann distribution of a spin-glass into a continuous probability density. I will then discuss the problem of modeling the resulting continuous spin-glass using normalizing flows. Two approaches will be considered, one based on the forward KL divergence and one based on the reverse KL divergence. To evaluate both approaches, I will present numerical results for the Sherrington-Kirkpatrick spin-glass, which is known to exhibit rich phenomena such as replica symmetry breaking and ultrametricity. The forward KL approach is able to approximately capture these phenomena, whereas the reverse KL approach suffers from mode collapse. I will conclude with a discussion of the physical interpretation of the learned normalizing flow.
Host: Gary Shiu
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Department Meeting
Time: 12:15 pm - 1:15 pm
Place: B343 Sterling
Speaker: Mark Eriksson, UW - Madison
Host: Mark Eriksson
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Thursday, November 4th, 2021

Wisconsin Quantum Institute
Chicago Quantum Summit
Time: 9:30 am - 4:45 pm
Place: in person and virtual, see for details and to register
Speaker: Various, see website and agenda, CQE
Abstract: The fourth annual Chicago Quantum Summit will be a daylong program of presentations and discussions focusing on growing quantum ecosystems, commercializing research, and considering complex issues such as workforce development and inclusion — on both local and global scales.

The Summit is a hybrid event. Virtual participation is broadly available.

View the 2021 Summit Agenda:
Host: CQE
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Astronomy Colloquium
How big are Galactic Winds?
Time: 3:30 pm - 5:00 pm
Place: 4421 Sterling Hall, Coffee and Cookies at 3:30 pm, Talk starts at 3:45 pm
Speaker: Professor David Rupke, Rhodes College
Abstract: Intense star formation and rapid black hole accretion in the centers of galaxies produce energy that propels gas outward. These galactic winds affect the evolution of their host galaxies, and may self-regulate the future growth of stars and black holes. Galaxies are also known to be surrounded by enormous reservoirs of gas. Galactic winds are a likely mechanism by which these reservoirs are created. However, we don't know how far most galactic winds extend into their surroundings. I will discuss observations of galactic winds driven by star formation and black holes that probe their extent and illuminate the connection between galaxies and their surroundings. I will also review how some astronomers will use the James Webb Space Telescope to answer these questions.
If you are unable to attend in Person below is the zoom link
Host: Professor Christi Tremonti
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NPAC (Nuclear/Particle/Astro/Cosmo) Forum
Off the Beaten Track: Searches for Long-lived Particles with CMS
Time: 3:30 pm - 4:30 pm
Place: Chamberlin 4274 or
Speaker: Karri DiPetrillo, Fermilab
Abstract: Our best hope for a beyond the Standard Model discovery at the LHC requires breaking long-held assumptions about how to look for new physics. It is more important than ever before to consider complex and challenging final states that may have previously evaded standard search strategies. In this talk, I will discuss recent searches for long-lived particles with the CMS experiment. I will focus on the experimental techniques used to overcome challenges with triggering, reconstruction, and non-standard backgrounds, and how different approaches impact sensitivity to new physics. I will also touch on opportunities to expand our potential for discovery in the near future.
Host: Sridhara Dasu
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Friday, November 5th, 2021

2022 Mini-Semester Program Information Session
Time: 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
Place: B343 Sterling Hall and online at
Speaker: Jim Reardon, University of Wisconsin
Abstract: The UW-Physics department is partnering with Brookhaven National Lab (BNL) to promote and recruit UW students interested to participate in the "2022 Mini-Semester Program” taking place January 3-7, 2022. We are specifically seeking students who are focused on pursuing physics, or physics-affiliated disciplines, as their primary academic major.

If you are interested, we are hosting an informational session this FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 5 at NOON, in STERLING HALL, ROOM B343. You will hear directly from BNL Educational Programs representatives about this opportunity.

The 2022 Mini-Semester Program will offer a unique opportunity to attend lectures, guided tours of the facilities, and interact with scientists and research in a real-world setting at Brookhaven National Lab. You will be provided with transportation, accommodations, and meals offered throughout the program. See attached flyer for more details, eligibility requirements, and application process.

Applications are due 5:00 pm EST/4:00 pm CST on Friday, November 19, 2021.

Feel free to reach out if you have any questions.

-Jim Reardon, Director of Undergraduate Programs
Department of Physics,

Video Recording of Presentation

Host: Jim Reardon
Presentation: BNL Educational Programs Mini-Semester Program.pdf
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Graduate Introductory Seminar (Physics 701)
The Fourth State of Matter: Understanding the Magnetized Plasma Universe to Fusion Energy on Earth
Time: 12:05 pm - 12:55 pm
Place: 2241 Chamberlin
Speaker: John Sarff, UW Madison Department of Physics
Host: Sridhara Dasu
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Physics Department Colloquium
LHC reloaded
Time: 3:30 pm - 4:30 pm
Place: 2103 Chamberlin Hall
Speaker: Steve Nahn, Fermilab
Abstract: In all the turmoil of the recent past, a milestone quietly slipped by - 10 years of running the Large Hadron Collider. After a quick primer in the nuts and bolts of Energy Frontier physics, I'll take a brief look at what's been done in those ten years, and then turn to the future and how we're preparing for it. As it turns out, there is still much to explore.
Host: Tulika Bose
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