Michael Barnett, a researcher with the Lab’s Physics Division and the Large Hadron Collider (LHC), has collaborated on a slideshow for Scientific American online that features ’19 Ways Art and the LHC Open a Portal to Physics.” The slideshow includes works by current artists who were inspired by the Higgs boson, antimatter, and the workings of the collider itself, as well as pieces by masters of the past — such as Salvador Dali and Leonardo da Vinci — for whom science was a driving force in their pieces. More>
Posts Tagged ‘Physics Division’
A roster of stellar physicists kicks off BrunoFest today in honor of Berkeley Lab and UC Berkeley theorist Bruno Zumino’s 90th birthday. Part of the celebration is a public lecture by Fabiola Gianotti, former spokesperson (leader) of the ATLAS experiment at the Large Hadron Collider, who announced last July 4th, along with her colleague from the CMS experiment, the discovery of a new particle that looks very like the long-sought Higgs boson. Gianotti will talk about ‘The Higgs Boson and Our Life’ starting at 5 p.m. Friday in the International House’s Chevron Auditorium.
Four Lab researchers have been elected to the 2013 class of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, an honorary society founded in 1780 to recognize leading “thinkers and doers.” The new members affiliated with Berkeley Lab are (clockwise) Frances Hellman of the Materials Sciences Division, Don Tilley of the Chemical Sciences Division, Susan Marqusee of the Physical Biosciences Division, and Hitoshi Murayama of the Physics Division. All four also hold joint appointments as professors at UC Berkeley. More>
Berkeley Lab’s sound-restoration experts have done it again. They’ve helped to digitally recover a 128-year-old recording of Alexander Graham Bell’s voice, enabling people to hear the famed inventor speak for the first time. The recording ends with Bell saying “in witness whereof, hear my voice, Alexander Graham Bell.” The Physics Division’s Carl Haber and the Engineering Division’s Earl Cornell conducted the work. The project involved a collaboration between Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History, the Library of Congress, and Berkeley Lab. More>
The IceCube neutrino telescope, built deep in the ice at the South Pole using rugged, sophisticated detectors designed at Berkeley Lab, hopes to find neutrinos from deep space that can reveal otherwise hard-to-see processes like gamma-ray bursts. When researchers combed through two years of data, events nicknamed “Bert” and “Ernie,” recorded in August 2011 and January 2012, popped out. They signaled the most energetic neutrinos ever observed anywhere, with quadrillion electron volt (1 PeV) energies. A slim chance that the signals are background noise prevents a claim of discovering astrophysical neutrinos, but more analysis is on the way. More>
Last weekend the Cryogenic Dark Matter Search (CDMS-II), located in Minnesota’s Soudan mine and long spearheaded by Bernard Sadoulet of Berkeley Lab’s Physics Division and UC Berkeley, with Stanford’s Blas Cabrera, announced good odds that three events observed in a recent search were not background noise but lightweight particles of dark matter. The events were caught by backstop silicon detectors instead of CDMS-II’s principal detectors, made of more massive germanium, and their unusually low mass conflicts with results of some other experiments and leading theories about dark matter particles, but may be consistent with other results and newer proposals. More>
Last week over 160 participants from 40 institutions in North and South America and Europe met at Berkeley Lab to gauge the progress of the Dark Energy Survey (DES) Collaboration. DES programs include strong and weak gravitational lensing, large-scale structure, galaxy clusters, supernovae, quasars, and others. Physics Division Director Natalie Roe kicked off the meeting Monday, and meeting organizer Alex Kim wrapped it up Friday with thanks to his crew. Based at Fermilab, DES uses the Dark Energy Camera, whose focal plane consists of Berkeley Lab CDs, on the Blanco telescope at the Cerro Tololo Inter-American Observatory in Chile.
George Gidal, a distinguished experimental particle physicist and longtime member of the Physics Division, died March 1st at the age of 78. He joined Berkeley Lab as a new postdoc in 1961, met his wife, Toby, a computer programmer, here, and based his entire career at the Lab, where he was also an early member of Scientists for Sakharov, Orlov, and Sharansky (SOS). Gidal retired in 1999 but remained active in physics until 2004, contributing to many important 20th-century discoveries that elucidated fundamental particles and interactions, with a special interest in matter-antimatter asymmetry. More>
Press conferences in Europe and the U.S. this morning announced the first cosmological results of the Planck mission to map the cosmic microwave background at the highest level of detail ever achieved. The new data reveal a universe that is accelerating but is older and expanding more slowly than previously thought. It also contains more matter and less dark energy. Berkeley Lab physicists and computer scientists have played a major role in Planck.
A NASA telephone news conference tomorrow morning will announce the first cosmology results from Planck, the European Space Agency mission launched in 2009. Martin White of the Physics Division, a Planck scientist, is on the five-member panel discussing the results. One of Planck’s two main instruments evolved from a design by George Smoot, working with Reno Mandolesi and Marco Bersanelli, and much of the analysis was done at NERSC, with major contributions by Julian Borrill and others. Audio of tomorrow’s briefing, beginning at 8:00 a.m. PDT, will be streamed live on the NASA website at http://www.nasa.gov/newsaudio and http://www.ustream/tv/nasajpl2.