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Zen and the Art of Atomic Physics

Event Details

Event Dates: 

Wednesday, January 24, 2018 - 4:00pm

Seminar Location: 

  • Duane Physics Room G1B20

Speaker Name(s): 

Eric Hudson

Speaker Affiliation(s): 

University of California, Los Angeles
Seminar Type/Subject

Scientific Seminar Type: 

  • Physics Department Colloquium

Event Details & Abstract: 

In the Ten Bulls tradition, the fifth stage of Zen is reached when the practitioner has caught and tamed the wild bull. This is roughly the state of atomic physics. The atom has been tamed. It can be prepared in a single quantum state, its evolution coherently controlled, and its entanglement generated at will.  As such, many new quantum-assisted technologies and fundamental physics measurements have resulted and a quantum revolution is well underway that promises to touch almost every aspect of our lives. By the seventh stage of Zen, the Bull has transcended and is no more. This again may be paralleled in atomic physics as the atom is being replaced with richer quantum systems such as molecules, whose internal degrees of freedom provide new opportunities for quantum science and technology.
In this talk, I will briefly review the science and technology that have come from atom taming and then discuss our efforts to tame other bulls: polar molecular ions and atomic nuclei.