|2001 Nobel Laureate in Physics to present lecture
RELEASED: May 2, 2002
DANVILLE, KY-Eric A. Cornell, a recipient of the Nobel Prize in Physics in 2001, will give a public lecture on May 9 at 8 p.m. on campus in Weisiger Theatre. Cornell's lecture is titled "Stone-Cold Science: Bose-Einstein Condensation and the Weird World of Physics a Millionth of a Degree from Absolute Zero."
Cornell and colleagues Carl E. Wieman and Wolfgang Ketterle received the Nobel Prize for their landmark 1995 creation of the world's first Bose-Einstein condensate, a new form of matter that occurs at just a few hundred millionths of a degree above absolute zero.
As atoms get colder, they become more like waves, and less like particles. When atoms of a gas get so cold that the "waviness" of one atom overlaps the waviness of another, the result is a sort of quantum mechanical identity crises, a "condensation" predicted 70 years ago by Albert Einstein. Dr. Cornell will discuss how one reaches the necessary record-low temperatures and explain why one goes to the trouble to make this bizarre state of matter.
Marshall Wilt, Centre professor of physics, said, "The science community at Centre is eagerly anticipating Professor Cornell's visit. One of our physics majors was instrumental in persuading Dr. Cornell to come to Danville. Our students often amaze me."
During his visit to campus, Dr. Cornell will also present a more technically oriented colloquium entitled "Rotating the Irrotatable: Quantized Vorticies in a Super-Gas" on May 8 at 4 p.m. in Olin Hall, room 124. This lecture is also open to the public.
Cornell is a senior scientist at the National Institute of Standards and Technology, a fellow of JILA and a professor adjoint at the University of Colorado at Boulder. He received a B.S. degree from Stanford University and a Ph.D. from MIT.
Cornell's research interests center around various aspects of ultracold atoms, including Bose-Einstein condensation and experiments on atoms guided by optical forces inside hollow glass fibers and by magnetic forces along lithographically patterned wires.
600 W. Walnut Street
Danville, KY 40422
Public Information Coordinator: Telephone 859-238-5714