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IAP 2005 Activities by Category

Physical Sciences

2005 EAPS Lecture Series: The Perilous Earth, Understanding Natural Hazards
Stéphane Rondenay
No enrollment limit, no advance sign up
Participants welcome at individual sessions (series)

Despite the influence of human activity on the environment, Earth has a rather brutal way of reminding us repeatedly that we are not in control. During the past year, we have experienced a devastating hurricane season in the Caribbean and southeastern US, increased activity at Mt St Helens, and the occurrence of several large earthquakes worldwide. We will investigate the causes of such natural phenomena, their predictability and their societal impacts.
Web: http://eapsweb.mit.edu/events/lecture_series.shtml
Contact: Vicki McKenna, 54-910, x3-3380, vsm@mit.edu
Sponsor: Earth, Atmospheric and Planetary Sciences

Deep Impact: Fact or Fiction?
Rick Binzel
Hollywood movies portray our imminent doom by the impact of an asteroid or comet. Yet is there any real chance of this actually happen? What could we do if we were actually faced with an asteroid on a collision course?
Wed Jan 5, 12-01:00pm, 54-915

Abrupt Climate Change
Giulio Boccaletti
Mon Jan 10, 12-01:00pm, 54-915

Hurricanes and Hurricane Risk: When Will New England Have Another Great Hurricane?
Kerry Emanuel
New England has experienced three major hurricanes since it was colonized in the 17th century, far too few to make reasonable inferences about the probability of future events. We will discuss two major new techniques for estimating hurricane risk and compare these independent methods, focusing on their predictions for New England.
Wed Jan 12, 12-01:00pm, 54-915

Shake, Rattle and Roll: Demystifying "The Big One"
Stephane Rondenay
Earthquakes occur in a variety of tectonic settings. Here, we will look into what makes subduction-zone earthquakes the potential "big ones" of the lot.
Fri Jan 14, 12-01:00pm, 54-915

An Evaluation of Earthquake Hazard Mitigation Measures
Daniel Barclay
A qualitative presentation and discussion of various U.S. seismic safety measures' effectiveness to see what lessons (if any) can be drawn for planning authorities in other regions.
Wed Jan 19, 12-01:00pm, 54-915

Tsunamis Triggered by Submarine Landslides
David Mohrig
In the last 100 yrs the East Coast of North America has been hit by only one catastrophic tsunami. This wave was produced by a large submarine landslide off the coast of Newfoundland. Learn about underwater landslides, tsunamis and the methods used by geologists to assemble records for infrequent, large tsunamis from the sedimentary deposits.
Fri Jan 21, 12pm-01:00am, 66-110, Note new room

Radiation on Terrestrial Planets
Shane Byrne
Mon Jan 24, 12-01:00pm, 54-915

Storm Surges and Coastal Cities: Venice, for How Long?
Paola Rizzoli
Coastal cities all over the world suffer from extreme flooding produced by the passage of severe storms in the adjacent sea. The flooding of Venice is heightened by natural and man-induced subsidence. A solution of mobile barriers closing the lagoon inlets will be illustrated and projections will be discussed for future scenarios of sea level rise.
Wed Jan 26, 12-01:00pm, 54-915

Large Volcanic Eruptions
Tim Grove
Fri Jan 28, 12-01:00pm, 54-915

Breakdown of the Born-Oppenheimer Approximation in Diatomic Molecules
Robert Field
No enrollment limit, no advance sign up
Participants welcome at individual sessions (series)
Prereq: 5.61 or equivalent and an interest in molecular dynamics

A lecture series on photofragmentation dynamics in diatomic molecules. The first lecture introduces terms in the Hamiltonian, especially troublesome Born-Oppenheimer breakdown terms that "cause" all intramolecular dynamics. Subsequent lectures include topics: perturbations, autoionization, predissociation, semiclassical calculation of vibrational overlap integrals, wavepacket dynamics, and the Landau-Zener picture of electronic transitions induced by crossing potential curves.
Contact: Robert Field, 6-219, 253-1489, rwfield@mit.edu
Sponsor: Chemistry
Cosponsor: Spectroscopy Lab

Introduction to the Spectroscopic Effective Hamiltonian
Robert Field
The Born-Oppenhiemer approximation and matrix elements of terms in the effective molecular Hamiltonian that violate the BO approximation. Vibration, rotation, spin-orbit, interelectronic interaction. Hund's coupling cases.
Mon Jan 3, 09-10:30am, 6-233

Spectroscopic Perturbations, Predissociation, and Autoionization
Robert Field
Introduction to dynamical processes.
Tue Jan 4, 09-10:30am, 6-233

Semiclassical methods for calculating vibrational overlap integrals
Robert Field
All coupling processes are mediated by vibrational overlap integrals, which are computed numerically. Semiclassical calculation of overlaps reveals physical factors controlling computed values: the length of the stationary phase region is controlled by the slopes of the potential curves at the intersection and the velocity in the crossing region.
Wed Jan 5, 09-10:30am, 6-233

Wavepackets and Landau-Zener
Robert Field
What happens in the vicinity of a curve crossing?
Fri Jan 7, 09-10:30am, 6-233

Cleaner Living through Greener Chemistry
Jeffrey Steinfeld, Bill Van Schalkwyk, Kendra Bussey, Jacqueline Tio
Thu Jan 27, 10am-12:00pm, 6-233, Refreshments will be served.

No limit but advance sign up required (see contact below)
Signup by: 21-Jan-2005
Single session event
Prereq: none

Green chemistry promotes cleaner, safer, and more efficient process design upstream to prevent billions of pounds of hazardous waste downstream. For years industry contended with managing hazardous waste and through green chemistry, realized environmental and financial benefits. MIT is now exploring green chemistry as a strategic hazardous waste management tool and an opportunity to demonstrate environmental stewardship. Join us for a discussion on green chemistry: what it is, who adopted it, and where MIT has work underway. Hear from Chemistry faculty and students who are analyzing MIT’s chemical purchases; defining common chemical uses; understanding where waste occurs and its cost; and researching alternatives for certain chemicals.
Contact: Susan Leite, x3-5246, smleite@mit.edu
Sponsor: Chemistry
Cosponsor: Environmental Programs Office

Feedback Control of NMR Spin Systems: A Control-Theoretic Perspective
Claudio Altafini, SISSA-ISAS International School for Advanced Studies
Tue Jan 11, Wed Jan 12, Tue Jan 18, Wed Jan 19, 10:30am-12:00pm, NW14-1112

No enrollment limit, no advance sign up
Participants requested to attend all sessions (non-series)

Assuming that ensemble measurements can be performed in real time, the control of an NMR spin system can be studied within the paradigm of classical control theory. Adopting this perspective, these lectures will discuss several aspects of the "state manipulation problem", including controllability, model-based open loop control, real-time state estimation (tomography) based on incomplete and/or noisy data, and the synthesis of feedback mechanisms which can stabilize the system within a desired state.
Web: http://www.sissa.it/~altafini
Contact: Timothy F. Havel, NW14-2218, (617) 253-8309, tfhavel@mit.edu
Sponsor: Cambridge-MIT Institute

Frontiers of Astronomy, Astrophysics, and Space Science and Technology
Dr. Ralf Heilmann
No enrollment limit, no advance sign up
Participants welcome at individual sessions (series)
Prereq: None

Check frequently for updates of this series!

A series of lectures and lab tours aimed at freshmen non-physics majors highlighting the latest discoveries about the nature of our universe and the potential for dramatic advances in the coming decade. Tour the MIT labs (advance sign up) where the next generation of cutting-edge telescopes and instruments are being developed, and get a sneak preview of tomorrow's headlines in astronomy, astrophysics, and space science and technology.
Web: http://space.mit.edu/IAP/2005/activities.html
Contact: Dr. Ralf Heilmann, 37-421, 253-8764, ralf@space.mit.edu
Sponsor: Center for Space Research

Mars Gravity Biosatellite
Dr. Paul Wooster
The Mars Gravity Biosatellite program is an effort to design, build, launch, and recover a low-earth orbiting satellite containing a payload of 15 mice to study the effects of Martian gravity on mammals in preparation for a human mission to Mars.
Thu Jan 6, 02-02:30pm, 37-252

MIT's Man Vehicle Laboratory
Philip Ferguson
MVL's goal is to define physiological and cognitive limitations of pilots and passengers of air- and spacecraft, and to optimize human-vehicle system effectiveness and safety. We will cover projects such as astronaut motor control adaptation, artificial gravity, virtual reality training, astronaut energetic studies and a new spacesuit design.
Thu Jan 6, 02:30-03:00pm, 37-252

Tour of the Man Vehicle Laboratory
Philip Ferguson
The lab tour will showcase the main research areas being pursued in the MVL, such as a hydraulic robot, new spaceflight experiments on the ISS, artificial gravity on our short-arm centrifuge, virtual reality training technology, and more.

Enrollment limit: 24 persons; advance sign-up required (contact ralf@space.mit.edu)
Thu Jan 6, 03pm-03:45am, 37-252

The History of the Universe in 30 Minutes
Prof. Max Tegmark
Our entire observable universe is inside a sphere of radius 13.3 billion light-years, with us at the center. Space continues outside the sphere, but an opaque glowing wall of hydrogen plasma hides it from our view. Check href="http://space.mit.edu/IAP/2005/activities.html">here for details.
Tue Jan 11, 02-02:30pm, 37-252

Taking a Picture of an Extra-Solar Planet
Dr. Benjamin Lane
The study of extrasolar planets is one of the most exciting research endeavors of modern astrophysics. While the list of known planets continues to grow, no direct image of any extrasolar planet has been obtained to date. I will discuss a number of recent developments in this exciting area.
Tue Jan 11, 02:30-03:00pm, 37-252

New Visions of the Center of Our Galaxy
Dr. Frederick Baganoff
A new generation of instruments have revealed the core of the Milky Way in spectacular detail, including strong evidence for the existence of a supermassive black hole. Flares just outside the black hole's event horizon are observed across the electromagnetic spectrum to measure the physical properties of the plasma on which the black hole feeds.
Thu Jan 13, 02-02:30pm, 37-252

Mapping Hydrogen Structures in the Young Universe
Prof. Jaqueline Hewitt
The characteristic hydrogen radio line emitted in the young universe is redshifted to frequencies below 200 MHz when we observe it today. A key project of the new Mileura Widefield Array radio telescope is to use the redshifted hydrogen line to map the first structures and to detect the ionizing effects of the first luminous objects.
Thu Jan 13, 02:30-03:00pm, 37-252

Tour of the Operations Control Center for the Chandra X-ray Observatory
Dr. Irene Porro
The Chandra X-ray Observatory, one of NASA's Great Observatories, is controlled a few blocks from MIT main campus. Tour participants will be introduced to X-ray astronomy and visit the control center where the observatory science and mission operations are performed.

Limited to 25 participants
- advance signup required (contact ralf@space.mit.edu)
Thu Jan 13, 03:15-04:15pm, 37-252

Science in the Woods: Tour of MIT's Haystack Observatory
Dr. Preethi Pratap
MIT's Haystack Observatory is an interdisciplinary research center engaged in radio astronomy, geodesy, atmospheric sciences, and radar applications.
Talks will be followed by a tour of the research facilities, including the 37-m (115 ft) diameter radio telescope.

Advance signup required (contact ralf@space.mit.edu)
- Limited to 20 participants
Tue Jan 18, 12:15-05:30pm, Bus to Haystack Obs.

High Energy Processes in Star Formation
Dr. Norbert Schulz
Young stars are strong X-ray emitters exceeding emissions from the Sun by many orders of magnitude. High precision X-ray spectral diagnostics increasingly shape a novel understanding of high energy processes which take place during the early phases of stellar evolution with implications towards the origins of our own solar system.
Thu Jan 20, 02-02:30pm, 37-252

How to Build a Spectroscopy X-Ray Telescope
Dr. Ralf Heilmann
Telescopes for x-ray astronomy are subject to a unique set of requirements different from optical or radio telescopes due to the nature of x-rays. This talk will cover how these constraints are attacked in the Space Nanotechnology Lab at MIT's Center for Space Research.
Thu Jan 20, 02:30-03:00pm, 37-252

Tour of the Space Nanotechnology Laboratory
Dr. Ralf Heilmann
During the tour of the SNL's three clean rooms visitors will see sophisticated optical and mechanical systems (such as the Nanoruler) that support the development of thin-foil x-ray optics and gratings.

Enroll. limit: 6 persons; advance sign-up required (email ralf@space.mit.edu)
Thu Jan 20, 03:15-04:00pm, 37-252

Our Solar System as an Astrophysical Laboratory
Dr. Justin Kasper
Many high energy astrophysical processes such as particle acceleration, magnetohydrodynamic shock waves, and magnetic
reconnection cannot easily be recreated in a laboratory on Earth. Instead we learn from studying these processes in the solar system with data from instruments on spacecraft such as Voyager, Wind, Trace, and Solar Probe.
Tue Jan 25, 02-02:30pm, 37-252

Hunting for the Brightest Explosions in the Universe
Dr. Geoffrey Crew
For the last four years, the MIT-built High Energy Transient Explorer satellite (HETE) has been detecting and localizing gamma-ray bursts (GRBs): massive explosions thought to signify the births of black holes. We will describe the HETE satellite and how it has been used to shed light on "dark GRBs", the GRB-supernova connection, and X-ray flashes.
Tue Jan 25, 02:30-03:00pm, 37-252

Tour of the Operations Control Center for the High Energy Transient Explorer
Dr. Geoffrey Crew
This tour will showcase the HETE satellite and operations center. The HETE satellite is unique because it was built in and operated from a university, rather than a NASA center. We will review the construction of the satellite and its science instrument complement, its launch, and flight operations from MIT. Adv. sign-up req.(ralf@space.mit.edu)
Tue Jan 25, 03-03:45pm, 37-252

Gravitational Lensing
Prof. Paul Schechter
Thu Jan 27, 02-02:30pm, 37-252

Detecting Gravitational Waves
Dr. David Ottaway
Gravitational waves from astrophysical systems cause tiny changes in the distance between massive objects, or "test particles". We can detect these waves by measuring displacements of 10^-18 m rms (1/1000 of an atomic nucleus!). I will describe how we can make such precise measurements.
Thu Jan 27, 02:30-03:00pm, 37-252

Tour of the Laser Interferometer Gravitational Wave Observatory (LIGO) Lab
Dr. David Ottaway
Visitors will be taken on a tour of the LIGO prototyping facilities at MIT. These include a full-scale prototype of the LIGO vacuum chambers, laser, isolation and suspension systems, and laboratories for thermal and optical noise measurements.

Limited to 16 participants, advance signup required (contact ralf@space.mit.edu).
Thu Jan 27, 03:15-04:15pm, 37-252

G. R. Harrison Spectroscopy Laboratory: Four "Whys" in Multidimensional Spectroscopy
Michael S. Feld
Wed Jan 19, 09-11:30am, 34-401A

No enrollment limit, no advance sign up
Single session event
Prereq: None

This symposium will explore the basis for coherent multidimensional spectroscopy.

John Waugh, MIT Professor Emeritus
Multidimensional Spectroscopy — Why it started with NMR and (mostly) stays there.

Robert Griffin, MIT Francis Bitter Magnet Laboratory
Multidimensional NMR in rotating solids — Why high resolution?

Joseph Loparo, MIT Department of Chemistry
Two-dimensional IR spectroscopy: Observing coherent vibrations and hydrogen bond dynamics in water — Why two dimensions are better than one.

Keith Nelson, MIT Department of Chemistry
Multidimensional Spectroscopy — Why it is moving to the optical regime and has a glowing future there.
Web: http://web.mit.edu/spectroscopy/events/iap.html
Contact: Vinnie Russo, 6-014, x3-9774, vrusso@mit.edu
Sponsor: Spectroscopy Lab

G.R. Harrison Spectroscopy Laboratory: Optical Imaging, Scattering, and Interference for Biological Investigations
Gabriel Popescu
No enrollment limit, no advance sign up
Participants welcome at individual sessions (series)
Prereq: Prior acquaintance with optics and EM theory

The theme of this course is the study of modern optical technologies based on microscopy, scattering, and interference for biomedical investigations. More details of topics can be found on the Spectroscopy Lab website.
Web: http://web.mit.edu/spectroscopy/events/iap.html
Contact: Gabriel Popescu, 6A-230D, x2-7831, gpopescu@mit.edu
Sponsor: Spectroscopy Lab

Gabriel Popescu
Introduction to optical imaging, scattering, and interference for biological investigations.
Wed Jan 5, 02-03:00pm, 1-375

Session 2
Gabriel Popescu
Math toolbox: Linear Sytems, covolutions, Fourier transform, useful theorems.
Thu Jan 6, 02-03:00pm, 1-375

Session 3
Gabriel Popescu
Elements of optical microscopy: imaging systems, resolution, contrast, examples.
Fri Jan 7, 02-03:00pm, 1-375

Session 4
Gabriel Popescu
Bright field, dark field, Schlerein, phase contrast, DIC/ Nomarski, confocal, etc.
Mon Jan 10, 02-03:00pm, 1-375

Session 5
Gabriel Popescu
Light scattering techniques: light scattering in inhomogeneous media, single scattering, multiple scattering, diffusion model.
Tue Jan 11, 02-03:00pm, 1-375

Session 6
Gabriel Popescu
Light scattering spectroscopy and diagnostics of early cancer.
Wed Jan 12, 02-03:00pm, 1-375

Session 7
Gabriel Popescu
Interferometric methods for diagnostics: field cross- correlations, cross-spectral densities; coherence time, area, interferometric geometries.
Thu Jan 13, 02-03:00pm, 1-375

Session 8
Gabriel Popescu
Michelson interferometry with polychromatic fields: optical gating, ODR- optical domain reflectometry, thickness/ refractive index measurements, OCT and applications.
Fri Jan 14, 02-03:00pm, 1-375

Session 9
Gabriel Popescu
Phase-based techniques of investigation: point measurements, harmonic, phase-referenced.
Tue Jan 18, 02-03:00pm, 1-375

Session 10
Gabriel Popescu
Quantitative phase microscopy: Fourier Phase Microscopy, applications for imaging cellular structure and dynamics.
Thu Jan 20, 02-03:00pm, 1-375

Geoscience Career Planning, Goal Setting and Time Mangement
Mark Willis
Wed Jan 19, Thu Jan 20, Fri Jan 21, 02-04:00pm, E25-117

No enrollment limit, no advance sign up
Participants requested to attend all sessions (non-series)

In this seminar visiting alumni from the oil industry and MIT faculty will offer advice about what experiences and skills are needed to break into and be successful in their respective geoscience areas. We will cover employer expectations, whole-life goal-setting that encompasses your career and time management.
Web: http://eapsweb.mit.edu/courses/index.shtml#on-campus
Contact: Mark Willis, E34-408, x2-2816, mewillis@mit.edu
Sponsor: Earth, Atmospheric and Planetary Sciences

Hollywood Science: How the Movies Present Our World
Vicki McKenna
Tue Jan 4, Sun Jan 9, Thu Jan 13, Thu Jan 27, 07-09:00pm, 54-915

No enrollment limit, no advance sign up
Single session event

This short movie series is a companion to the 2005 EAPS Lecture Series on Natural Disasters. Spend part of your evening watching a Hollywood disaster movie, and the following noon come hear the real deal on the related science. Popcorn and soda provided.

  • Armageddon - Jan. 4
  • Day After Tomorrow - Jan. 10     Note new day.
  • Hurricane - Jan. 11
  • The Core - Jan. 13
  • Earthquake - Jan. 18
  • Space 1999 - Jan. 24
  • Documentary on Venice flooding - Jan. 25
  • Volcano - Jan. 27
    Web: http://eapsweb.mit.edu/events/lecture_series#movies.shtml
    Contact: Vicki McKenna, 54-910, x3-3380, vsm@mit.edu
    Sponsor: Earth, Atmospheric and Planetary Sciences

  • How to Write a Successful Grant Application
    Dr. Stephen Steadman
    Mon Jan 24, 03-04:00pm, 26-414, Kolker Room

    No enrollment limit, no advance sign up
    Single session event

    Many young researchers writing grant applications make serious errors despite having outstanding ideas that are well worth support by federal agencies. These include sending the proposal to the wrong program, missing deadlines for proposal submission, and incomplete or poorly written proposals. A description of the proposal process will be presented with information to help avoid these and other errors, with particular emphasis on funding in the physical sciences by the National Science Foundation and the U.S. Department of Energy Office of Science. Dr. Steadman has recently been a Program Director/Manager in both agencies. Please contact steadman@mit.edu by Friday, Jan. 21 so enough copies of handout materials will be available.
    Contact: Dr. Stephen Steadman, 26-505, x8-8678, steadman@mit.edu
    Sponsor: Lab for Nuclear Science

    MIT-Schlumberger Workshop: Frontiers of Inversion
    Dale Morgan, Dan Burns, Rama Rao, Peter Tilke and Michael Prange
    Tue Jan 25, Wed Jan 26, 09am-05:00pm, 66-110, Note new room

    No enrollment limit, no advance sign up
    Participants requested to attend all sessions (non-series)
    Prereq: None

    The problem of determining the parameters of physical, chemical and/or biological models based on observed (noisy) data is referred to as the inverse problem. Often, progress within the geosciences and other fields is related to the robust solution of inverse problems. Faced with large, often nonlinear systems, scientists must develop models that in fitting the data must also quantitatively address model uniqueness and accuracy. Examples include constructing models of the earth, the ocean circulation and climate. During this workshop, some key issues in inverse methods facing both academic and industrial scientists will be discussed in an attempt to identify common challenges and possible approaches to solve these problems.
    Contact: Dale Morgan, E34-412, x3-7857, morgan@erl.mit.edu
    Sponsor: Earth, Atmospheric and Planetary Sciences

    NED: What the Libraries Bring to Your Desktop
    Chris Sherratt
    Tue Jan 18, 02-03:00pm, 14N-132

    No enrollment limit, no advance sign up
    Prereq: none

    Several nuclear science and engineering sources are available right from your desktop at MIT. We will explore what the Libraries provide, sites open to all and how to find those older, elusive technical reports.
    Contact: Chris Sherratt, 54-200, x3-5648, gcsherra@mit.edu
    Sponsor: Libraries

    Natural Hazards in the Northeast: Challenges of Preparedness and Mitigation
    Ed Fratto Executive Director, Northeast States Emergency Consortium
    Schedule: TBD
    No enrollment limit, no advance sign up
    Single session event

    Special concluding lecture in the 2005 EAPS Lecture Series on natural hazards. Monday, Jan. 31; noon to 1 pm; 54-915.
    Contact: Vicki McKenna, 54-910, x3-3380, vsm@mit.edu
    Sponsor: Earth, Atmospheric and Planetary Sciences

    On the Duality Between Quantum States and Quantum Maps
    Karol Zyczkowski Perimeter Institute - Waterloo, Ontario and Institute of Phy
    Tue Jan 18, Wed Jan 19, 09-10:30am, NW14-1112

    No enrollment limit, no advance sign up
    Participants requested to attend all sessions (non-series)

    These lectures will describe the theory of positive maps and its applications to quantum entanglement, in particular:
  • (1) Positive, completely positive (CP), and completely co-positive (CcP) maps;
  • (2) Characterization of a map by its dynamical (or Choi) matrix;
  • (3) Dual cones and superpositive maps;
  • (4) The Jamiolkowski isomorphism between CP-maps and density matrices on an extended Hilbert space;
  • (5) An analogous relation between classical maps and discrete probability distributions;
  • (6) Decomposable maps and the Stormer-Woronowicz theorem;
  • (7) The positive partial transpose criterion for separability;
  • (8) Unistochastic operations determined by unitary matrices of an extended dimensionality.
    Contact: Tim Havel, NW14-2218, (617) 253-8309, tfhavel@mit.edu
    Sponsor: Cambridge-MIT Institute

  • Physics Lectures for the General MIT Community: a

    Bose-Einstein Condensates - The Coldest Matter In The Universe

    Prof. Wolfgang Ketterle
    Mon Jan 10, 01:30-02:30pm, 6-120

    No enrollment limit, no advance sign up
    Single session event

    What happens when a gas is cooled to absolute zero? A new door to the quantum world opens up because all the atoms start "marching in lockstep", they form one giant matter wave - the Bose-Einstein condensate. This was predicted by Einstein in 1925, but only realized in 1995 in laboratories at Boulder and at MIT. Since then, many properties of this mysterious form of matter have been revealed. Recently, a new frontier has opened up on Bose-Einstein condensation of molecules and atom pairs. The talk will link basic concepts of quantum mechanics with today's research, and discuss the techniques to cool and manipulate matter at nanokelvin temperatures.
    Contact: Ray Ashoori, 13-2053, ashoori@mit.edu
    Sponsor: Physics

    Physics Lectures for the General MIT Community: b

    From Theoretical Physics to Quantitative Finance

    Mark Mueller, MIT Alumni
    Wed Jan 12, 01:30-02:30pm, 6-120

    No enrollment limit, no advance sign up
    Single session event

    What does physics have in common with financial markets? Are the skills of a theoretical or experimental physicist useful in the analysis of financial markets? How can physicists or other scientists and engineers pursue careers in quantitative finance? The speaker’s answers to these questions will form the basis for a discussion that promises to range from the practical aspects of job-hunting to philosophical questions about the role of mathematical models in describing and organizing what we observe.
    Contact: Ray Ashoori, 13-2053, ashoori@mit.edu
    Sponsor: Physics

    Physics Lectures for the General MIT Community: c

    Exploring the Structure of Matter

    Prof. Bernd Surrow
    Thu Jan 13, 01:30-02:30pm, 6-120

    No enrollment limit, no advance sign up
    Single session event

    The question,"What is matter made of?" has a long tradition in mankind. Our current physical understanding of the world is summarized in the Standard Model. Many of its predictions were confirmed with great success. Scattering experiments played an important role in our understanding of hadronic matter. These results contributed to the test of the field theory among quarks and gluons known as Quantum Chromodynamics (QCD). After a brief overview of the basic ingredients of particle physics, the general methodologies used to explore the structure of matter are presented. Selected experimental results will be shown on the structure of the proton in comparison to QCD predictions including a discussion of open questions.
    Contact: Prof. Bernd Surrow, 26-402, 324-1522, surrow@lns.mit.edu
    Sponsor: Physics

    Physics Lectures for the General MIT Community: d

    Celestial Mechanics from Newton to Einstein

    Prof. Scott Hughes
    Wed Jan 19, 01:30-02:30pm, 6-120

    No enrollment limit, no advance sign up
    Single session event

    Celestial mechanics is one of the greatest achievements of Newton's theory of gravity. Newton's law is universal: A single law describes gravity on the surface of the earth and between celestial bodies. Einstein taught us that Newton's gravity is incomplete. His general theory of relativity subsumed Newton's gravity, correcting some inconsistencies and revealing new features. One of the best ways to test general relativity is again by studying orbits. In this lecture, I will show how celestial mechanics is modified as we go from Newton to Einstein, detailing the subtle differences found in the solar system, the significant effects found in some stellar systems, and the enormous effects that we aim to observe in the near future.
    Contact: Prof. Scott Hughes, 37-626C, 253-8523, sahughes@mit.edu
    Sponsor: Physics

    Physics Lectures for the General MIT Community: e

    The Physics of Frustration in Quantum Magnets

    Prof. Young Lee
    Fri Jan 21, 01:30-02:30pm, 6-120

    No enrollment limit, no advance sign up
    Single session event

    Can new states of matter be created using an ordinary oven? One of the central issues in condensed matter physics focuses on understanding the exotic phases which emerge from collections of interacting electrons. This talk will introduce the basic concepts in this active field of research. The powerful technique of neutron scattering, an essential tool in this pursuit, will be described. Intriguing new materials will be highlighted, ranging from novel superconductors to the quest for the "holy grail" of spin frustration here at MIT.
    Contact: Prof. Young Lee, 13-2153, 253-7834, younglee@mit.edu
    Sponsor: Physics

    Physics Lectures for the General MIT Community: f

    What's the Matter with Antimatter?

    Prof. Gabriella Sciolla
    Mon Jan 24, 01:30-02:30pm, 6-120

    No enrollment limit, no advance sign up
    Single session event

    The Big Bang model predicts that equal amounts of matter and antimatter were produced at the beginning of time. So how can the Universe exist? Why didn't all the matter annihilate with the antimatter? Why did some matter survive? Why not antimatter? Particle Physics has an explanation to these questions that goes under the name of "CP violation". What is CP violation? Can it be measured in the lab? Does it explain the Universe as we know it? These and other questions will be addressed in this talk.
    Contact: Prof. Gabriella Sciolla, 26-551, 258-0541, sciolla@mit.edu
    Sponsor: Physics

    Physics Lectures for the General MIT Community: g

    Scanning Tunneling Microscopy: A Tool for Atomic Scale Measurement
    Prof. Eric Hudson
    Wed Jan 26, 01:30-02:30pm, 6-120

    No enrollment limit, no advance sign up
    Single session event

    As technology drives electronics towards "nanoelectronics," where wires are a few atoms wide and transistors are sensitive to single electrons, physicists must have a tool to investigate the new phenomena that arise in this regime. The Scanning Tunneling Microscope is one such tool, and in this talk I will highlight its ability to image and move atoms, and discuss some results of my research on high temperature superconductors.
    Contact: Prof. Eric Hudson, 13-2114, 452-2115, ehudson@mit.edu
    Sponsor: Physics

    Plasma Science and Fusion Center IAP Series
    Jeffrey Freidberg, Peter Catto, Bruce Lipschultz
    No enrollment limit, no advance sign up
    Participants welcome at individual sessions (series)

    This series introduces plasma physics research and areas of related interest at the Plasma Science and Fusion Center. See URL below.
    Web: http://www.psfc.mit.edu/
    Contact: Paul Rivenberg, NW16-284, x3-8101, rivenberg@psfc.mit.edu
    Sponsor: Plasma Science and Fusion Center

    A Half Century of Fusion Research
    Steve Dean Fusion Power Associates
    Over the past half century, scientists and engineers have provided a solid foundation for developing fusion as a practical energy source. But why is it taking so long, and is it possible to accelerate progress? A new generation of scientists and engineers is needed now to bring the fusion quest to fruition.
    Mon Jan 10, 10-11:00am, NW17-218

    Global Energy Prospects and Problems.
    Michael Golay
    The world runs on fossil fuels, especially petroleum - for which we must rely upon the middle east. Enough fossil fuel resources have been identified to meet likely needs for at least a century, with little R&D needed. Mitigation of global warming would require creating a new portfolio of non-emitting technologies on a very large scale.
    Mon Jan 10, 11am-12:00pm, NW17-218

    Advances in Magnetic Fusion Science & the ITER Project
    Rob Goldston Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory
    The last decade has seen dramatic advances in understanding plasmas for fusion energy. As a result, the world is on the verge of beginning construction of ITER, a device capable of producing hundreds of megawatts of fusion power, at high gain, for thousands of seconds. The next major step after ITER could indeed be a demonstration power plant.
    Mon Jan 10, 02-03:00pm, NW17-218

    Turbulence and Transport: The Secrets of Magnetic Confinement
    Martin Greenwald
    The realization of fusion as a practical power source requires that we learn to confine plasmas (ionized gases) with temperatures above 100 million degrees. The use of strong magnetic fields to confine fusion-grade plasmas has resulted in remarkable progress. However, the basic physics is rich and significant challenges remain.
    Tue Jan 11, 10-11:00am, NW17-218

    Tera-scale Computers in Controlled Fusion Research
    Paul Bonoli
    With the help of ganged clusters of computers capable of
    more than a trillion floating point operations per second,
    researchers are moving closer to modeling controlled fusion more realistically. These tera-scale devices are fast becoming a necessary tool for understanding the complex physics of our present day fusion experiments.
    Tue Jan 11, 11am-12:00pm, NW17-218

    Tour of PSFC Fusion Experiments
    Tour guide to be announced
    The PSFC is exploring fusion through two different devices. The Alcator C-Mod tokamak is a well tested approach that has produced decades of progress towards achieving fusion energy. The Levitated Dipole Experiment is a brand new approach, only been in operation since August. Come see what makes these experiments unique.
    Tue Jan 11, 01-02:00pm, NW17-218

    Fast Ignition: An Alternate Path to Inertial Confinement Fusion
    David Meyerhofer University of Rochester
    Fast Ignition provides a promising, high-gain alternative to conventional Inertial Confinement Fusion (ICF). Besides describing how this approach differs from conventional ICF, Dr. Meyerhofer will highlight some of the exciting plans and developments for this novel approach.
    Wed Jan 12, 11am-12:00pm, NW17-218

    Simulating Astrophysical Jets in the Laboratory
    Paul Bellan California Institute of Technology
    Newly forming stars, black holes, and active galactic nuclei have completely different size scales, and yet have a common feature: bi-polar plasma jets shooting out along their rotation axis. This talk will describe a high-power, pulsed MHD plasma experiment where lab-scale replicas of astrophysical jets are routinely produced.
    Thu Jan 13, 11am-12:00pm, NW17-218

    Teaching Physics Since WWII: A Panel Discussion
    Stephanie Hunt
    Wed Jan 26, 03-04:30pm, N-52 2nd floor

    No enrollment limit, no advance sign up
    Single session event

    Everyone knows about the Nobel Prizes won by MIT physics professors, but do you know how the department invented and reinvented new approaches to introductory physics? Every MIT undergraduate takes physics, and while some of the basic experiments haven't changed in 150 years, the way the class is taught has been revolutionized. The last 60 years have seen the most dramatic of these changes to the landscape of physics education.
    Web: http://emergingtech.mit.edu/iap05/
    Contact: Stephanie Hunt, N52-231, x3-4405, sdh@mit.edu
    Sponsor: MIT Museum
    Cosponsor: Physics

    The Feynman Films
    Markos Hankin
    No enrollment limit, no advance sign up
    Participants welcome at individual sessions (series)
    Prereq: None

    This series of films by Richard Feynman is open to the MIT community.
    Contact: Markos Hankin, 4-309, 253-4844, mhankin@mit.edu
    Sponsor: Physics

    The Law of Gravitation
    Markos Hankin
    Mon Jan 3, 12-01:30pm, 6-120

    The Best Mind Since Einstein
    Markos Hankin
    Wed Jan 5, 12-01:30pm, 6-120

    The Relation of Mathematics to Physics
    Markos Hankin
    Thu Jan 6, 12-01:30pm, 6-120

    The Great Conservation Principles
    Markos Hankin
    Mon Jan 10, 12-01:30pm, 6-120

    Symmetry in Physical Law
    Markos Hankin
    Wed Jan 12, 12-01:30pm, 6-120

    The Last Journey of a Genius
    Markos Hankin
    Thu Jan 13, 12-01:30pm, 6-120

    Take the World from Another Point of View
    Markos Hankin
    Wed Jan 19, 12-01:30pm, 6-120

    The Distinction of Past and Future
    Markos Hankin
    Fri Jan 21, 12-01:30pm, 6-120

    Probability and Uncertainty
    Markos Hankin
    Mon Jan 24, 12-01:30pm, 6-120

    Seeking New Laws
    Markos Hankin
    Wed Jan 26, 12-01:30pm, 6-120

    Tour of the MIT-Bates Electron Linear Accelerator Center
    Dr. Stephen Steadman, Prof. Richard Milner
    Tue Jan 25, 01-04:30pm, Van/bus to Middleton

    Enrollment limited: advance sign up required (see contact below)
    Signup by: 24-Jan-2005
    Limited to 25 participants.
    Single session event

    The MIT Bates facility, supported by the U.S. Department of Energy Office of Science and located in Middleton, provides up to 1 GeV beams of electrons that are used like a giant microscope to probe inside the nucleus to learn how it is put together as a composite system of quarks formed into protons and neutrons. The facility will soon be used in new ways as an interdisciplinary center for research and development in accelerator science and technology. A brief general description of the facility and its research will be followed by a tour of the facility.
    Web: http://mitbates.lns.mit.edu/bates/control/main
    Contact: Dr. Stephen Steadman, 26-505, x8-8678, steadman@mit.edu
    Sponsor: Lab for Nuclear Science

    Massachusetts Institute of Technology
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    Comments and questions to: iap-www@mit.edu Academic Resource Center, Room 7-104, 617-253-1668
    Last update: 30 September 2004