SLAC Colloquium

CMB-S4: a next-generation search for inflation, relic particles, and neutrino mass using the Cosmic Microwave Background

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Location

SLAC, Kavli Auditorium

Speaker
Zeeshan Ahmed, KIPAC & SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory

Shortly after the birth of the Universe, space was filled with glowing red-hot plasma. As the universe expanded and cooled over the next 13.8 billion years, the glow of that plasma redshifted to longer wavelengths and is observed today by our telescopes as the Cosmic Microwave Background (CMB). Spatial variations of CMB intensity and polarization provide a record of conditions in the early universe, possibly encoding signatures from cosmic inflation and unique traces of relic particles.

Unleashing the benefits of diversity – for scientific innovation

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Location

SLAC, Kavli Auditorium 

Speaker
Caroline Simard (Stanford University)

In this talk I will review the research on the benefits of diversity for innovation, and unpack the critical factors that teams should consider when seeking to leverage the benefits of diversity for innovation. Participants will leave the session with research-based actions to further inclusion and innovation on their teams.

(Doors open at 3:15pm for refreshments and discussion)

Black hole physics with the Event Horizon Telescope

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Location

SLAC, Kavli Auditorium

Speaker
Feryal Ozel (University of Arizona)

The Event Horizon Telescope (EHT) is an experiment that is being performed on a global array of millimeter wavelength telescopes that span the Earth from Hawaii to Chile and from the South Pole to Arizona. With the full array, it is capable of imaging the event horizons of the supermassive black hole at the center of our Galaxy, Sagittarius A*, and the black hole at the center of M87, with an unprecedented 10 μas resolution.

Exoplanet frontiers: Kepler & the next decade of NASA exploration

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Location

SLAC, Kavli Auditorium

Speaker
Natalie Batalha (NASA Ames Research Center)

On the eve of Kepler's launch in 2009, astronomers knew of a few hundred planets orbiting other stars in the Milky Way. Today, the discoveries spill into the thousands, and the sensitivity boundaries continue to expand. NASA's Kepler Mission unveiled a galaxy replete with small planets and revealed populations that don't exist in our own solar system. The final discovery catalog was delivered in the autumn of 2017 together with the survey completeness and reliability metrics required for studying exoplanet demographics as a function of size, orbital period, and host star properties.

From the Accelerating Universe to Accelerating Particles: Cosmic Philanthropy

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Location

SLAC, Kavli Auditorium

Speaker
Bob Kirshner (Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation)

In this talk, I will show how the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation, your philanthropic neighbor on Page Mill Road, helps fund basic science.  With an annual science budget of $100 Million per year, we are small compared to federal agencies, but we are free to select topics and methods to advance the fields in which we work.  I will

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