The University of Chicago News Office
Sept. 19, 2005 Press Contact: Steve Koppes
(773) 702-8366

Lecture Series to describe how scientists observe the invisible

Learn about some of the remarkable methods and devices scientists use to help them overcome the limits of their senses, allowing them to experience the invisible and untouchable features of the universe in a series of free, public lectures at the University of Chicago beginning Saturday, Oct. 1.

The series of eight lectures, titled “Challenges to Seeing the Invisible: Foregrounds and Backgrounds in the Scientific Exploration of the Universe”, will be held Saturdays from 11 a.m. to noon in Room 106 of the Kersten Physics Teaching Center, 5720 S. Ellis Ave.

Delivering the lectures will be Dorothea Samtleben, a Research Associate of the Enrico Fermi Institute and a Fellow of the Kavli Institute for Cosmological Physics at the University of Chicago. Her lectures will explain some of the advanced techniques used for studying the universe, and illustrate how discoveries on the smallest scales impact the scientific understanding of the largest scales, and vice versa.

Samtleben wrote her Diploma Thesis for the Max-Planck-Institut für Physik in München, Germany, and received her Diploma in physics in 1997 and her Ph.D. in physics in 2001 from the Universität Hamburg, Germany. Currently she is contributing to the new Cosmic Anisotropy Polarization Mapper, which studies the afterglow of the big bang for clues about the earliest events in the history of the universe, and to a related experiment, Q/U Imaging Experiment.

The talks are the 62nd series of the Arthur Holly Compton Lectures, sponsored each autumn and spring by the University’s Enrico Fermi Institute. Compton was a University of Chicago physicist and a Nobel laureate best known for demonstrating that light has the characteristics of both a wave and a particle. He also organized the effort to produce plutonium for the atomic bomb and directed the Metallurgical Laboratory at the University of Chicago, where Fermi and his colleagues produced the first controlled, nuclear chain reaction in 1942.

The lectures are intended to make science accessible to a general audience and to convey the excitement of new discoveries in the physical sciences. Previous topics have ranged from the smallest fundamental particles to the history of the universe. For more information, call (773) 702-7823.
Last modified at 10:37 AM CST on Monday, September 19, 2005.

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