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Free lecture series to spotlight ultracold atoms

Sep 24, 2007

Free lectures at the University of Chicago will describe how understanding and controlling atoms and gas chilled to nearly absolute zero may ultimately unlock the intricacies of complex materials, tailor new forms of matter, and make possible the manipulation of information on far vaster scales than today.

“Shining Light on Ultracold Atoms: Illuminating Complex Matters,” is the title of the next series of 10 Arthur Holly Compton Lectures, sponsored each spring and fall by the University’s Enrico Fermi Institute.

The 66th series of these public lectures will begin Saturday, Sept. 29, and will be held each Saturday through Dec. 8 (except. Nov. 24, when there will be no lecture).

The lectures will be given from 11 a.m. to noon in Room 106 of the Kersten Physics Teaching Center, 5720 S. Ellis Ave. As with all Compton lectures, they are intended to make science accessible to a general audience and to convey the excitement of new discoveries in the physical sciences.

Delivering the lectures will be Nathan Gemelke, a Research Associate in the James Franck Institute and the Grainger Postdoctoral Fellow in experimental physics at the University. Gemelke will explain how detailed understanding of the atom is leading to new frontiers of a quantum mechanical world.

Gemelke received his B.S. in applied math, engineering and physics from the University of Wisconsin, Madison, and his Ph.D. in physics from Stanford University.

A former physicist at the University, Compton is best known for demonstrating that light has the characteristics of both a wave and a particle. He directed the Metallurgical Laboratory in Chicago, where Fermi and his colleagues produced the first controlled, nuclear chain reaction in 1942.

For more information about the lecture series, call (773) 702-7823.

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Last modified at 02:08 PM CST on Tuesday, October 02, 2007

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