Michaelmas 2015

Michaelmas Termcard

Monday week 1: G&D’s start of the year social

Join us at G&D’s for a friendly start to the year, all members will get a free voucher for ice cream! We will post a sign up form in the next email, sign-up is essential.


Thursday week 1: John Ellis FRS
“What Lies Beyond the Standard Model?”
8:15 pm, Lindemann Lecture Theatre

One of the most influential European physicists of modern theoretical physics.  A keen advocate of supersymmetric models, and head of CERN’s theory division for six years, Ellis was also author of the paper which laid out the best way for producing and detecting the Higgs, the properties of which he is actively involved in investigating. https://en . wikipedia . org/wiki/Penguin_diagram.
Abstract: “The discovery of the Higgs boson at the LHC opens a new window on physics beyond the Standard Model, which is required to understand the dark matter in the Universe, the origin of matter itself and many other open questions. What might this new physics be, and how can we find it?”


Thursday week 2: Samuel Henry
“The Muon g-2 Experiment”
8:15 pm, Martin Wood Lecture Theatre

Samuel sees his work as relating to two fundamental questions – “What is the universe made of?” and “What is the origin of the matter-antimatter asymmetry?”. He thus works on the dark matter search using high precision instruments, and measurements of the electron dipole moment of the neutrino. He will give a talk on the muon g2 experiment, of which more can be found at http ://www . theguardian . com/science/life-and-physics/2013/jun/25/brookhaven-muon-barge-truck-fermilab
Abstract: “The anomalous magnetic dipole moment of the muon is a powerful probe for New Physics as it can be both measured and calculated to sub-parts-per-million accuracy. The observed discrepancy between theory and experiment in the last few decimal places could be a sign of as yet undiscovered particles and interactions beyond the Standard Model of Particle Physics.
The Fermilab Muon g-2 experiment will take a more precise measurement, using the old 14m diameter magnet shipped across the US from New York to Illinois, a higher flux beam of muons and an upgraded suite of instruments. This type of precision measurement particle physics complements the collider experiments running at CERN.”


Monday week 3: Extracurricular Class on “Infinite Random Labyrinths and Renormalisation”


Wednesday week 3: Halloween Social, 20:30 at Magdalen College

We will be providing plenty of drinks and snacks for your entertainment.
Sign up is essential – at https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1FkRdaQAJpIIQKwEFO5BDLkb6fi1n1vmHBfQYRtNgS-0/viewform – be quick it’s filling up fast!


Monday week 4: Extracurricular Class on “New Frontiers in Computing”


Thursday week 4: David Lucas

We are at an enormously exciting time. We have now for the first time, to the required precision, demonstrated the validity of the ‘quantum logic’ operations necessary to build a quantum computer, right here in Oxford! We are very pleased that the head of the lab that obtained these results is coming to speak to us!
I will give an introduction to the field of quantum computing, using the ideas of cryptography as an example application. I will review briefly possible methods of building quantum computers, the present state-of-the-art and technological challenges – a strong bias towards my own field (ion traps) will become evident!


Monday week 5: Extracurricular Class on “Working with Active Circuits”


Thursday week 5: Julian Barbour and David Sloan

Abstract: David and Julian will talk about the origin of the arrows of time and the
possibility that there is another universe ‘on the other side of the Big Bang’
in which the experienced direction of time is opposite to what we experience.
Julian will begin with a model based on the Newtonian N-body problem that makes the possibility plausible and relatively easy to understand while David will talk
about the conditions under which passage ‘through the Big Bang’ may be
possible in accordance with General Relativity.


Wednesday week 6: Extracurricular Class on “Quantum Information”


Thursday week 7: Michael Green FRS

One of the most prominent string theorists today. The Green-Schwarzman anomaly cancellation mechanism, solved a conundrum in type I string theory, realising that an anomaly in the theory, a lack of symmetry in the way in which infinities are removed, cancels in the appropriate number of dimensions. This is widely acknowledged to have initiated the first revolution in string theory. Green has also pioneered the work that predicted the now ubiquitous D-branes and instantons. In the words of the Royal Society: “These definitive papers initiated the explosive growth of superstring theory, now one of the most active and exciting areas of fundamental theoretical physics”
Abstract: ‘Fascinating physical problems arise on vastly different distance scales, ranging from the nature of the fundamental particles, properties of condensed matter, to features of the whole Universe. The talk will present a survey of approaches to understanding such disparate phenomena based on ideas emerging from String Theory, which has the potential for providing a theoretical link between areas of physics that otherwise appear to be only remotely connected.’


Talks are generally on Thursdays at 8:15PM in the Martin Wood Lecture Theatre.£10 Life membership, £4 per talk for non-members.

We are proudly sponsored by Metaswitch Networks and Jane Street.