Categories: Events
      Date: Feb 12, 2015
     Title: Nobel Laureate to Speak at NSU

Dr. William D. Phillips, 1997 Nobel Prize recipient, will visit NSU's Wilder Performing Arts Center and present thoughts on "Time, Einstein and the Coolest Stuff in the Universe" on February 27, 2015 at 1:30 pm.




IGERT-MNM Trainees Quincy Williams, Thej Tumkur, Vanessa Peters, Srujana Prayakarao, Rabia Hussain and Kevin Tanyi assisted in the coordination and planning of this incredible opportunity for a speaking engagement by a Nobel Laureate sponsored by the Norfolk State University chapter of the Optical Society of America along with other campus organizations.  Quincy serves as OSA President, Thej as Vice President, Vanessa as Secretary, and Rabia, Srujana and Kevin are all members.




At the beginning of the 20th century, Albert Einstein changed the way we think about time.  Near the end of the century, scientists learned how to use laser light to lower gas phase atoms to temperatures billions of times colder than anything else in the universe.  Now, in the 21st century, Einstein's thinking, and ultracold atoms, are shaping one of the key scientific and technological wonders of contemporary life:  atomic clocks, the best timekeepers ever made.  Such super-accurate clocks are essential to industry, commerce and science; they are the heart of Global Positioning System (GPS), which guides cars, planes and hikers to destinations.  Today, the best primary atomic clocks use ultracold atoms to achieve time accuracies greater than one second in 300 million years, with improvements in this accuracy progressively developing.  Super-cold atoms, with temperatures potentially less than one-billionth of a degree above absolute zero, function at and allow testing of some of Einstein's strangest predictions.


William D. Phillips received his PhD from MIT in 1976, and after 2 years as a Chaim Weizmann Postdoctoral Fellow at MIT, he joined the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST).  He currently leads the Laser Cooling and Trapping Group of NIST's Physical Measurement Laboratory, and is a Distinguished University Professor at the University of Maryland (UMD).  He is a Fellow of the Joint Quantum Institute of  NIST and UMD.  Dr.  Phillips' research group studies the physics of ultracold atomic gases,  In 1997, Dr. Phillips shared the Nobel Prize in Physics "for development of methods to cool and trap atoms with laser light".
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