January 24, 2014 (Friday) 4:00-5:00p.m. Small Hall 110Speaker: Dr. Kei Moriya, Indiana University
Host: Prof. Wouter Deconinck
Title: Hadron Spectroscopy and What We Can Learn About QCD from GlueX
Abstract: Quantum Chromodynamics, or QCD, is the force that binds quarks and gluons together to form bound states called hadrons. While the equations of QCD are rather simple, due to the strongly coupled nature at the GeV scale the spectrum of bound states is anything but simple. The upcoming GlueX Experiment at Jefferson Lab will explore the spectrum of hadrons and aims to expand our knowledge of hadron interactions and their connection with the underlying theory of QCD. The experiment will use a 9 GeV photon beam to produce many states of interest, and the large angular coverage of the detector will enable reconstruction of the multi-particle states produced. What can we learn from the spectrum of states, and how will this alter our understanding of how QCD works? Details of the experiment, what we expect to see, and some possible analyses involving strangeness will be discussed.
Januar 29, 2014 (Wednesday) 4:00-5:00p.m. Small Hall 110 (cancelled)Speaker: Dan Millison, P.E., P.G./Transcendergy, L.L.C.
Host: Prof. Gene Tracy
Title: "Saving the Forest and the Trees: A Conceptual Model of Sustainable Coal"
Abstract: The global debate on climate change mitigation has focused on the single tree of climate change, blinding most policy-makers to the broader forest of sustainability. Although coal is public enemy number one in the war on climate change, it will remain one of the single largest sources of global energy supply for the foreseeable future. Nevertheless, a successful outcome of negotiations for a post-2012 climate change treaty framework would include a long term objective of leaving coal in the ground.
As most policy-makers believe that leaving coal in the ground is an unrealistic scenario for the foreseeable future, carbon capture and storage (CCS) has attracted significant research and development in an attempt to achieve some semblance of carbon neutrality. Commercially viable-CCS presents a potential moral hazard: solving the CO2 disposal problem will encourage greater use of coal, without addressing the upstream environmental and social impacts of coal mining, transport, and downstream waste disposal. Clean coal as currently envisioned supercritical power with CCS bolted on is not sustainable. CCS as end-of-pipe disposal is a non-starter in the absence of a robust regulatory framework for waste management including carbon pricing.
Bypassing the dual challenges of making coal too expensive or making low-carbon energy too cheap to meter, there is an intermediate solution to render coal more sustainable. Sustainable coal - not to be confused with clean coal is possible by combining underground coal gasification (UCG, with the produced gas used in combined-cycle gas turbine power plants or other off-the-shelf systems including conversion to liquids) with carbon capture, reuse, and storage (CCR, preferably via carbonate mineralization or other utilization not involving additional hydrocarbon production). This end-to-end system is necessary to close the sustainability loop. UCG is not a new technology, having been deployed in the former Soviet Union more than 60 years ago.
There are several commercial UCG operations worldwide today, but it is not well-known even among energy specialists. UCG can remove most of the negative externalities associated with coal mining, transport, and conventional pollutant management. CCR would provide a positive market driver in place of a price on carbon. A commercially viable CCR system would also enable more sustainable exploitation of non-conventional gas resources (e.g., shale gas). An end-to-end system would facilitate the convergence of energy security and climate change objectives globally and particularly in developing countries which may rely increasingly on imported coal.
In the U.S., UCG offers the prospect of transforming the coal mining industry to a high-value added sector supporting next-generation power plants and coal-to-liquids production, at the same time facilitating exports of natural gas.
February 14, 2014 (Friday) 4:00-5:00p.m. Small Hall 110Speaker: Dr. D. Chris Benner, College of William & Mary
Host: Physics Chair David Armstrong
Title: Methane in the Outer Solar System: A Century and a Half Later
February 21, 2014 (Friday) 4:00-5:00p.m. Small Hall 110Speaker: Mordecai Feingold, Caltech
Host: Prof. Marc Sher
Title: Newton and the Origin of Civilization
Abstract: Isaac Newton's Chronology of Ancient Kingdoms Amended, published in 1728, one year after the great man's death, unleashed a storm of controversy. And for good reason. The book presented a drastically revised timeline for ancient civilizations, contracting Greek history by five hundred years and Egypt's by a millennium. Newton and the Origin of Civilizationseeks to reconcile Isaac Newton the rational scientist with Newton the theologian, alchemist, and chronologist, by illuminating on the manner in which he strove for nearly half a century to rectify universal history by reading ancient texts through the lens of astronomy, and to create a tight theoretical system for interpreting the evolution of civilization on the basis of population dynamics.
March 14, 2014 (Friday) 4:00-5:00p.m. Small Hall 110
Host: Prog. K. Orginos
Title: Nucleon structure from global QCD analysis of parton distributions
March 28, 2014 (Friday) 4:00-5:00p.m. Small Hall 110Speaker: Margaret Murnane (JILA), William Small Distinguished Lecture
Host: Prof. Erlich
Title: Science at the Timescale of the Electron: Ultrafast X-Rays and Applications
Abstract: Ever since the invention of the laser over 50 years ago, scientists have been striving to create an x-ray version of the laser. The x-ray sources we currently use in medicine, security screening, and science are in essence the same x-ray light bulb source that Rontgen discovered in 1895. In the same way that visible lasers can concentrate light energy far better than a light bulb, a directed beam of x-rays would have many useful applications in science and technology. The problem was that until recently, we needed ridiculously high power levels to make an x-ray laser. The first successful x-ray laser experiments were, in fact, powered by nuclear detonations as as part of the star wars program in the 1980s. To make a practical, tabletop-scale, x-ray laser source required taking a very different approach that involves transforming a beam of light from a visible laser into a beam of x-rays. The story behind how this happened is surprising and beautiful, highlighting how powerful our ability is to manipulate nature at a quantum level. Along the way, we also learned to generate the shortest strobe light in existence - fast enough to capture even the fleeting dance of electrons in the nanoworld. This new capability shows promise for next-generation electronics, data and energy storage devices, and future medical diagnostics. (Popmintchev et al, Science 336, 1287 (2012))
April 4, 2014 (Friday) 4:00-5:00p.m. Small Hall 110
Host: Prof. Deconinck
Title: Experimental Tests of QCD Symmetries with Pions
Based on the spontaneous breaking of chiral symmetry, chiral perturbation theory (ChPT) is believed to approximate confinement scale QCD as demonstrated by increasingly accurate lattice calculations, particularly in pi-pi scattering. A pedagogical introduction to this area will be presented with special focus on recent, Increasingly accurate, experiments in electromagnetic pion production experiments from the proton; these test ChPT calculations and their energy region of validity. The connection between electromagnetic pion production, pi-N scattering, and quark mass effects will be illustrated.
April 18, 2014 (Friday) 4:00-5:00p.m. Small Hall 110
Host: Prof. Rossi
Title: Quantum Matter at Extreme Cold
April 25, 2014 (Friday) 4:00-5:00p.m. Small Hall 110Speaker: Dr. Karen Gibson
Host: Prof. Tricia Vahle
Title: Searching for the Dark Matter of the Universe in South Dakota
May 2, 2014 (Friday) 4:00-5:00p.m. Small Hall 110Speaker: Selim Shahriar, Northwestern University
Host: Prof. Irina Novikova