Past Events

  • Astro Seminar: "Overview of Planck Data and (Cosmological and Astrophyical) Results "

    DRL A6

    Graca Rocha (JPL)

    In this talk I will give an overview of Planck data and Cosmological and Astrophysical results: Temperature and polarization maps of the Cosmic Microwave Background radiation anisotropies, Power Spectra, Likelihoods and Parameters estimated from both Planck frequency maps and CMB maps. Constraints on scalar spectral index, n_s, optical depth due to reionization, \tau, and the scalar to tensor ratio, r, will be presented along with constraints on Non Gausssianity, NG, of the CMB fluctuations , its isotropy and low-l (large angular scales) anomalies. In addition main astrophysical res

  • Math-Bio seminar: "Eight thousand years of natural selection in Europe"

    Carolyn Lynch Lab, Room 318

    Iain Mathieson (Harvard University)

    The arrival of farming in Europe around 8,500 years ago necessitated adaptation to new environments, pathogens, diets, and social organizations. While indirect evidence of adaptation can be detected in patterns of genetic variation in present-day people, ancient DNA makes it possible to witness selection directly by analyzing samples from populations before, during and after adaptation events.

  • High Energy Theory Seminar: "Matter Transitions and Heterotic/F-theory duality"

    David Rittenhouse Laboratory, 2N36

    Lara Anderson (Virginia Tech)

    We explore a novel type of transition in certain 6D and 4D Heterotic/F-theory dual pairs, in which the matter content of the theory changes while the gauge group and other parts of the spectrum remain invariant.

  • Dissertation Defense: "Searching for Dark Matter with Single Phase Liquid Argon"


    Thomas Caldwell (UPenn)

  • Women in Physics Public Lecture Pt. 2: "Discovery and Diversity on the Frontier of Physics: My Fifty Year Journey in Carbon Science"

    Houston Hall, Hall of Flags (G-26)

    Mildred Dresselhaus (MIT)

    Prof. Mildred Dresselhaus, Institute Professor of Physics and Electrical Engineering at MIT, will give the inaugural public lecture of our Women in Physics group. A leader in promoting women in science as well as a mentor to hundreds of students, Dr. Dresselhaus will give her outlook on the interpersonal dynamics behind successful careers in science and the discoveries these careers can produce. The event is co-hosted by the Department of Physics and Astronomy and the Nano/Bio Interface Center.

  • 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.