February 7, 2014 at 9:25 pm

Physics Colloquium: Understanding the Universe, One Rare Isotope at a Time, Feb. 7

The Physics & Astronomy Colloquium Series presents Jens Dilling of the University of British Columbia on “Understanding the universe, one rare isotope at a time” on Friday, Feb. 7, at 4:10 p.m. in Walter 245.

Abstract: Many questions in understanding the universe remain at the centre of forefront research: how and where the chemical elements in the universe are created, the life and death of stars, why are some atoms stable and some decay, and what is the nature of neutrinos? These questions are intimately related to our fundamental understanding of the atomic nucleus. Recent progress in theory as well as experimental techniques and access to rare isotopes are at the very center in getting closer to answering these questions.

One of the premier facilities for rare isotopes is the ISAC complex at TRIUMF, Vancouver, Canada. The isotopes are produced, often only in minuscule quantities, and with half-lives as short as few milliseconds, hence the name rare. To overcome the research obstacles of rare isotopes and extract information about the atoms and their fundamental interactions dedicated instruments are required. We have developed very sensitive and fast methods using ion trap techniques at TITAN (TRIUMF’s Ion Trap of Atomic and Nuclear science). Ion traps are employed to measure atomic masses, using one single ion in as short as a 1/100 of a second with 10 parts per billion precision, breaking a world-record for precision mass spectroscopy. In this talk I will report on theses measurements and how they relate to answering the big questions, what we have learned, and where we stand.

Upcoming Spring 2014 Events

Colloquia are held in the Walter Hall, Room 245, on Fridays at 4:10 p.m. unless otherwise noted.

Michelle Espy of Los Alamos Scientific Lab on “Applications of SQUIDs: from brains to bombs” on Friday, Feb. 21, at 4:10 p.m. in Walter 245.

John Wikswo of Vanderbilt University on “A Physicist’s Perspective on the Complexity of Biology” on Friday, Feb. 28, at 4:10 p.m. in Walter 245.

TBA on Friday, March 14, at 4:10 p.m. in Walter 245.

Serge Nakhmanson of the University of Connecticut on “Computational Design of Multifunctional Complex-oxide Materials Across Length Scales” on Friday, March 21, at 4:10 p.m. in Walter 245.

Maxim Pospelov of the University of Waterlooon “Constraining the Dark Sector with BBN and CMB physics” on Friday, March 28, at 4:10 p.m. in Walter 245.

Jennifer Dionne of Stanford University on “Visualizing chemical reactions and light-matter interactions with nanometer-scale resolution” on Friday, April 4, at 4:10 p.m. in Walter 245.

Robert Austin of Princeton University on “Nonlinear Dynamics” on Friday, April 11, at 4:10 p.m. in Walter 245.

Nick Wu of the West Virginia University on “Plasmon-Enhanced Solar Energy Harvesting” on Friday, April 18, at 4:10 p.m. in Walter 245.

Departmental Awards Gathering on Friday, April 25, at 4:10 p.m. in Walter 245.

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