Department Calendar

January 2019

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Aashish Clerk - Institute of Molecular Engineering, University of Chicago

Aashish Clerk - Institute of Molecular Engineering, University of Chicago

Date: 
Thu, 01/17/2019 - 12:00pm
Location: 
705 Pupin Hall

 

"Bosonic analogues of topological superconductors"

Interest continues to grow in bosonic versions of topological electronic phases realized using photonic or phononic degrees of freedom.  These systems are typically non-interacting, and have the same band structure and edge state structure as their fermionic counterparts. In this talk, I’ll discuss recent theory work in my group on a class of bosonic systems where this correspondence fails, and the bosonic system exhibits unique topological properties.  They involve using parametric “two-photon” driving, and have Hamiltonians that superficially resemble those of topological superconductors.  Among the surprising effects that emerge are the presence of topologically-protected instabilities that can be harnessed for non-reciprocal quantum amplification, and effective non-Hermitian dynamics in a bosonic analogue of the Kitaev-Majorana chain.  I’ll discuss how these ideas could be realized in a variety of different experimental platforms.

About the speaker

Professor Aashish Clerk's research focuses on theoretical quantum condensed matter physics & quantum optics, engineered quantum systems, quantum information physics.  His group is broadly interested in developing a theoretical understanding of phenomena in driven-dissipative quantum systems, with a particular focus on superconducting quantum circuits, quantum optomechanical systems, and quantum electronic transport.

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01/17/2019 - 12:00pm
 
 
 
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Kerstin Perez - Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Kerstin Perez - Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Date: 
Mon, 01/28/2019 - 12:30pm
Location: 
Pupin Hall Theory Center, 8th Floor

 

"Scanning the Sky for Sterile Neutrino Dark Matter"

The particle nature of dark matter is a driving question of contemporary physics, with astrophysical experiments leading the search for dark matter annihilation or decay signatures.  In an era of ever-tightening constraints on Weakly-interacting massive particles (WIMPs), there is increasing interest in light (<1 GeV) dark matter candidates. Sterile neutrinos, which could provide an elegant solution to the puzzle of the observed active neutrino masses and mixing, are among the most well-motivated light dark matter candidates, with astrophysical X-ray observations offering the best opportunity for discovery.  In this talk, I will  review the status of X-ray searches for sterile neutrinos, including the candidate sterile neutrino signal at ~3.5 keV.  In particular, I will describe the novel use of the NuSTAR X-ray satellite observatory to provide the leading constraints in much of the mass range ~10-50 keV, improving upon previous limits at some masses by over an order of magnitude and reducing the available parameter space for sterile neutrinos in the simplest models by almost two-thirds.

About the speaker

Kerstin Perez's research involves using cosmic particles to look for beyond the Standard Model physics, in particular evidence of dark matter interactions. She leads the silicon detector program for the GAPS experiment, a balloon-borne instrument that aims to detect antideuteron and antiproton evidence of dark matter annihilation in the Galactic halo. As the first optimized experiment to search for low-energy antideuterons, which have been discussed for over a decade as a particularly low-background signature of dark matter, GAPS is poised to make a major contribution to the field. In addition, she is head of the analysis of high-energy X-ray emission in the inner parsecs of the Galaxy using the NuSTAR telescope array, and is involved in searches for X-ray signatures of exotic particle physics processes. She has also begun work on the prototype X-ray optics for the International Axion Observatory (IAXO), the upgrade to the CAST solar axion helioscope experiment.

In addition to mentoring students in research, Kerstin has a passion for science education and outreach, placing particular emphasis on connecting with students who, because of cultural factors or lack of exposure, have not considered the career paths that a science education opens.

More details on Kerstin's research can be found here.

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01/28/2019 - 12:30pm
 
Taku Izubuchi - RIKEN & Brookhaven National Laboratory

Taku Izubuchi - RIKEN & Brookhaven National Laboratory

Date: 
Mon, 01/28/2019 - 2:10pm
Location: 
Pupin Hall Theory Center, 8th Floor

 

Title & abstract TBA

About the speaker

Izubuchi has made important contributions in developing the mathematical tools for exploring QCD using a four-dimensional space-time lattice. He has contributed to the development of hardware and software for these numerical calculations using the world's most powerful supercomputers, and helped to identify and pursue the important physics problems these techniques can address—including searches for physics beyond the Standard Model and the exploration of fundamental asymmetries in the early universe. Among his list of scientific publications are several highly cited for their innovative methodology and insight into important physics questions. 

Izubuchi plays a leading role in the RIKEN (Japan)-BNL-Columbia and UKQCD collaboration, and had a vital role in the recent installation at Brookhaven of the powerful BlueGene/Q supercomputer for lattice computation. He also serves on the Scientific Program Committee of the USQCD collaboration, which oversees the allocation of nationally funded supercomputing resources for lattice calculations.

Izubuchi received his Ph.D. in 1997 from the University of Tokyo. He held a postdoctoral position at the University of Tsukuba for two years before becoming a tenured assistant professor at Kanazawa University. In 2008, he left that position to join Brookhaven Lab with a joint position as a RIKEN/BNL Research Center (RBRC) Fellow and a member of the High Energy Theory group in the Physics Department. In 2011, he became a founding group leader of the Computing Group of RBRC, and he is now a full-time member of the Physics Department.

More details can be found here.

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01/28/2019 - 2:10pm
 
 
 
 
 
 
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