On Thursday, November 4 at 5:30 pm the Physics Department will host guest speaker Brenda Fabela Enriquez for a general-audience lecture. Brenda is a PhD candidate in high-energy/particle physics at Vanderbilt University, and earned her undergraduate degree in physics from the Universidad Autónoma de Zacatecas, Mexico. Her research is performed with the Compact Muon Solenoid, one of the experiments at the Large Hadron Collider at CERN in Geneva.
Brenda’s talk, entitled Seeing with particles: understanding the Universe with high energy physics (abstract below), will take place Swanson 005. We hope to see you there!
Presenter: Brenda Fabela Enriquez, Vanderbilt University
Title: Seeing with particles: understanding the Universe with high energy physics
Abstract: As human beings, we have five basic senses that help us understand and experience the world. Sight is more often than not taken for granted, but our ability to see has driven a good amount of the development of science since the beginning of history. One example is the fascination for the night sky. Our curiosity led us to build instruments to expand the sense of sight to see objects far away… and what about objects near us? We are also curious to see what is inside the things around us, or more specifically, what they are made of. In this talk, I will go through how we detect the world around us and the instruments we have built to see at the smallest scales of the universe. In this realm, the concepts of energy and size are connected, such that the smaller the thing we want to “see”, the larger the energy we need. At this point, particle accelerators become the instruments with which we can zoom in on the fundamental structure of matter. We will talk about the biggest particle accelerator in the world which is the Large Hadron Collider (LHC), the questions we could answer with it and how this leads us to zoom back out to the largest scales of the Universe and tell us about its evolution.