Past Events

  • Condensed Matter Seminar: "Physical Aspects of Spindle Assembly"

    David Rittenhouse Laboratory, A4

    Dan Needleman (Harvard)

    The spindle is a complex assembly of microtubules, motors, and other associated proteins, which segregates chromosomes during cell division. In metaphase, the spindle exists in a steady-state with a constant flux of molecules and energy continuously modifying and maintaining its architecture.  While many of the individual components of the spindle have been studied in detail, it is still unclear how these molecular constituents self-organize into this structure.

  • Astro Seminar: "Constraining Gravity through CMB Lensing and Galaxy Velocities"

    David Rittenhouse Laboratory, A6

    Anthony Pullen (Carnegie Mellon)

    We discuss recent work exploring the use of CMB lensing to probe E_G, the ratio between curvature and velocity perturbations. This quantity is distinct for various gravity models, breaking the degeneracy in current cosmological probes of gravity and dark energy. While the lensing signal within E_G has traditionally been probed with galaxy-galaxy lensing, galaxy-CMB lensing is a more robust lensing tracer that can probe E_G at higher redshifts with fewer astrophysical uncertainties.

  • Women in Physics Public Lecture Pt.1: "Science, Scholarship and Snacks"

    Singh Center, Glandt Forum

    Mildred Dresselhaus (MIT)

    Join the Nano/Bio Interface Center for an afternoon of talks highlighting recent and ongoing nano-scale research presented by:

  • Math-Bio seminar: "Learning how antibodies are drafted and revised"

    Carolyn Lynch Lab, Room 318

    Erick Matsen (Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center)

    Antibodies must recognize a great diversity of antigens to protect us from infectious disease. The binding properties of antibodies are determined by the sequences of their corresponding B cell receptors (BCRs). These BCR sequences are created in "draft" form by VDJ recombination, which randomly selects and deletes from the ends of V, D, and J genes, then joins them together with additional random nucleotides.

  • Special Condensed Matter Seminar: "Topological semimetals and chiral transport in inversion asymmetric systems"

    DRL A2

    Shuichi Murakami, Department of Physics, Tokyo Institute of Technology

    The Z2 topological insulators (TIs) are topological phases under time-reversal symmetry. In 2007, we theoretically proposed a universal phase diagram describing a phase transition between 3D TIs and normal insulators (NIs), and we showed that in a TI-NI transition, a Weyl semimetal phase necessarily intervenes between the two phases, when inversion symmetry is broken. In this talk, we show that this scenario holds for materials with any space groups without inversion symmetry.

  • Special Seminar: "Illuminating biology a the nanoscale with single-molecule and super-resolution fluorescence microscopy"

    Glandt Forum, Singh Center, 3205 Walnut Street

    Xiaowei Zhuang, Harvard University and 2015 Recipient of the NBIC Award for Research Excellence in Nanotechnology

    Reception to follow.

  • Astro Seminar: "The Unique Links Between Transiting Brown Dwarfs and Transiting Hot Jupiters"

    DRL A6

    Thomas Beatty (Penn State)

    There are currently twelve known transiting brown dwarfs, nine of which orbit single main-sequence stars. These systems give us one of the only ways in which we may directly measure the masses and radii brown dwarfs, which in turn provides strong constraints on theoretical models of brown dwarf interiors and atmospheres. In addition, the transiting brown dwarfs allow us to forge a link between our understanding of transiting hot Jupiters, and our understanding of the field brown dwarf population.

  • Why Light Matters

    Franklin Institute *Wine & Cheese reception following event*

    From smart lighting, mobile connectivity and underwater communications, to aviation, defense and security, the countless applications of light have revolutionized society.

    Explore some of the newest ways in which light is becoming an indispensable part of our lives

    Professors Ravi Sheth and Arjun Yodh are two of three panelists leading a public discussion about "Why Light Matters". The free public event features panel moderator Derrick Pitts, Chief Astronomer at the Franklin Institute. 

    Admission is free with advanced registration PLEASE CALL 215-448-1200

  • Math-Bio Seminar: "Estimating the unseen variants in human populations provides a roadmap for precision medicine"

    318 Carolyn Lynch Laboratory

    James Zou, Microsoft Research New England and MIT

    What can we learn from 60,000 genome sequences? I will describe how we are leveraging the largest collection of human exomes to model the landscape of harmful genetic variations in healthy individuals. I will also discuss how we can use the previously identified variants to accurately estimate properties of the unobserved variants that exist in the general population. Our linear program estimators have strong mathematical guarantees. This model of rare, unobserved variants provides a roadmap for future sequencing projects, such as the Precision Medicine Initiative.

  • High Energy Theory Seminar: "TBA"

    DRL 2N36

    Cliff Burgess (McMaster)