Events News

May 7, 2013 at 4:06 pm

Midwest Physicists Came to Talk Big and Small—from Quarks to Superclusters


By Jean Andrews

Physicists from across the Midwest came to Athens in March to discuss “Quarks to Superclusters: the physics of the very big and the very small.”

The Department of Physics and Astronomy hosted the Ohio Section of the American Physical Society (APS) on the Athens campus March 29-30. The APS is a national member organization of professional physicists. The Ohio section is the only regional meeting in the Midwest, and attracts physicists from across Ohio, Michigan, Indiana, and other neighboring states. The theme of the meeting was nuclear and particle physics.

“We’ve invited outstanding scientists to speak on themes as diverse as quarks to superclusters. The conference is an amazing opportunity for us to highlight the hottest issues in the field today,” said conference organizer Ken Hicks, professor of physics in the College of Arts & Sciences.

The keynote address featured nuclear astrophysics professor Wick Haxton, professor at the University of California at Berkeley and senior faculty scientist at the Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory. Professor Haxton talked about a group of sub-atomic particles called solar neutrinos. Neutrinos are created as a result of nuclear reactions that take place in the sun.

Other plenary speakers included cosmologist and distinguished professor David Weinberg from Ohio State University and theoretical physicist Stan Brodsky from SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory, Stanford University.

Physicist Lawrence Weinstein from Old Dominion University also intrigued the audience with his talk on “Solving the World’s Problems on the Back of a Cocktail Napkin,” based on his popular science book Guesstimation, co-authored with mathematician John A. Adams.


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