Fermilab Colloquium Calendar Archive 2018

Raw date Event date Title Speakers Host Summary Links
20180110 Jan. 10, 2018
Muon collider feasibility: new studies of a low emittance muon source using positron beam
Donatella Lucchesi, University and INFN of Padova Dmitri Denisov The idea of a muon collider is intriguing physicists because it would give the possibility to explore phenomena in the multi-TeV energy region colliding point-like particles. The study of a muon accelerator with a hadronic muon source, ie muons coming from pion and kaon decays, has been pursued showing limitations due to the broad momentum and angular spectra of the decay muons. Video
20180117 Jan. 17, 2018
Schrödinger Cats, Maxwell’s Demon and Quantum Error Correction (that works)
Steven Girvin, Yale Quantum Institute Pushpa Bhat A revolution is underway in the construction of ‘artificial atoms’ out of superconducting electrical circuits. These macroscopic ‘atoms’ have quantized energy levels and can emit and absorb quanta of light (in this case microwave photons), just like ordinary atoms. The large size of these ‘atoms’ yields remarkably strong atom-photon coupling and has given us the ability to completely control and measure the quantum state of the electromagnetic field in a cavity at the level of individual microwave photons. Video
20180131 Jan. 31, 2018
European Particle Physics Strategy
Halina Abramowicz, Tel Aviv University Dmitri Denisov European particle physics community is planning exercise of long term planning. The process is starting with proposals to consider expected late 2018 and discussions to progress in 2019. The final plan is expected to be approved by CERN Council in Spring of 2020. The colloquium will discuss the process and goals of the European strategy exercise and how various groups and individual scientists can participate in this process. Video
20180214 Feb. 14, 2018
Quantum interference in coupled cavity-qubit systems
David P. Pappas, NIST Alexander Romanenko Quantum networks will enable extraordinary capabilities for communicating and processing quantum information. These networks require a that node that receives two coherent inputs and sends a conditional output to the next cascaded node through a quantum channel. Here, we demonstrate this basic functionality by exploiting a controllable interaction between electromagnetic quanta and discrete levels in... More »
20180221 Feb. 21, 2018
Exploration of the Solar System’s Ocean Worlds
Jonathan Lunine, Cornell University Alexander Romanenko Ocean worlds is the label given to objects in the solar system that host stable, globe-girdling bodies of liquid water—“oceans”—on or beneath their surfaces. The Galileo orbiter at Jupiter and Cassini at Saturn discovered subsurface water oceans on Europa, Enceladus and Titan, and surface methane seas on the last of these. What we know of these bodies of liquid, what are the prospects for life there and how do we explore them are the topics of this talk. Video
20180307 March 7, 2018
The road ahead: Challenges for future gravitational-wave detectors
Hartmut Grote, Cardiff University Chris Stoughton The first detections of gravitational waves from coalescing black holes and neutron stars in 2015 and 2017 have only started the field of gravitational-wave astronomy. More sensitive detectors are needed if one wants to explore a larger part of the observable universe and answer questions ranging from astrophysical evolution to cosmology and fundamental physics. Going from here I will highlight the main limitations and challenges to overcome on the way to build more sensitive detectors. Newtonian noise, thermal noise, and quantum noise are three prominent noise sources to name. And of course: LARGE detectors do not hurt either (except the budget…). I will also briefly discuss other potential uses of gravitational wave detectors, and I hope we can listen to how the universe would sound, imagining a noise-free detector! Video
20180328 March 28, 2018
Nuclear Fuel Cycle, Front End Supply
Penny Quinn Mike Albrow For twenty years after the fall of the Soviet Union, up to 10% of the electricity generated in the United States came from uranium recycled from Soviet nuclear weapons. The “Megatons to Megawatts” program was a unique partnership in which bomb-grade uranium from dismantled Russian nuclear warheads was downblended and used to produce fuel for American nuclear power plants. As a liaison between the United States and the former Soviet Union, my presentation will describe the “Front End” of the Nuclear Fuel Cycle. It will include a look at the various components of nuclear fuel supply and how the material makes its way to the nuclear plants - and how historical events have impacted the process and the markets over time. Video
20180404 April 4, 2018
The Compact Linear Collider (CLIC) Project: Status and Plans
Phil Burrows, Oxford University Dmitri Denisov The Compact Linear Collider (CLIC) is a proposed design for a high-energy electron-positron collider for potentially reaching multi-TeV centre-of-mass energies in lepton collisions. The first energy stage would be a Higgs-boson and top-quark factory at 380 GeV. I will review the CLIC project and present the current status of the energy-staged design. I will cover the physics motivation as well as the accelerator and detector designs. I will summarize planning and next steps for the project in the context of the update of the European Strategy for Particle Physics. Video
20180411 April 11, 2018
Expanding universe or shrinking atoms? Quantum Gravity, dark energy and the origin of the Universe
Christof Wetterich Pushpa Bhat Observation of the redshift of distant galaxies tells us that the ratio between intergalactic distances and the size of atoms increases. An expanding Universe or shrinking atoms both reflect the same reality and are equivalent. In a new view on cosmology with steadily increasing masses of elementary particles the universe can exist forever in the past and future - the big bang singularity turns out to be an artifact of an inappropriate choice of fields. Quantum gravity computations indicate that the universe could start in the infinite past near an ultraviolet fixed point with massless particles, and approach in the infinite future an infrared fixed point with spontaneously broken scale symmetry and massive particles. The cosmological constant problem is solved. The resulting model describes early inflationary cosmology and late dynamical dark energy with the same scalar field. It can be tested by observation of huge lumps in the cosmic neutrino background. Video
20180418 April 18, 2018
How are evolution and climate change being taught (or not) in schools?
Eugenie Scott, National Center for Science Education, Inc. Mike Albrow Both evolution and climate change are “controversial issues” in education, but are not controversial in the world of science. Nonetheless, every year in the United States, state legislatures contemplate bills restricting the teaching of evolution, climate change and other allegedly “controversial subjects”. Known generically as “Academic Freedom Acts”, these proposed bills direct teachers to “critically analyze” (i.e., criticize) or to present the “full range of scientific views” (i.e., include creation science and climate change skepticism) of these scientific fields. In his analysis of data collected over decades by the National Center for Science Education, Matzke traced the origin of these “Academic Freedom Acts” in his “Evolution of Antievolution Policies” in Science, showing that these bills are the current manifestations of the creationism and evolution controversy that has dogged American science education for over 100 years. As documented by surveys carried out by the NCSE and others, such legislation has a chilling effect on the willingness of teachers to present these topics in the classroom, and both evolution and climate change are under-taught or avoided at the pre-college level.
20180425 April 25, 2018
Phytoremediation at Argonne: Using plants to solve groundwater and soil contamination challenges
John J. Quinn, PhD, Argonne Chris Stoughton Green remediation of contaminated soil and groundwater involves strategies that maximize sustainability, reduce energy usage and emissions, reduce water usage, promote carbon neutrality, promote industrial materials reuse and recycling, and protect and preserve land resources. At the 317 and 319 Areas at Argonne National Laboratory, past industrial practices resulted in contamination of soil and groundwater by tritium and solvents. As a remedial action, Argonne chose a phytoremediation system, relying on plants to remediate the subsurface. This talk will cover the rationale, design, implementation, monitoring, and lessons learned from this green remediation system.