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Department of Physics and Astronomy

University of Mississippi

Events

  • Tue
    19
    Jan
    2021
    6:00 pmVia Zoom (connection details will follow!)

    Dr. Wayne Gray
    Department of Biology
    University of Mississippi

    Understanding Vaccines: Preventing Diseases from Smallpox to COVID-19

    These days everyone is talking about vaccines and hoping for an end to the COVID-19 pandemic. Vaccines are a miracle of modern medicine. At this month’s science café, we’ll address several questions concerning vaccines: How do they work to prevent disease? How safe are vaccines and why do some people have concerns about vaccines? What is herd immunity? What are the various types of vaccines? We’ll review the history of vaccines and discuss several of the more than 20 vaccines that are now routinely given to children and adults. Finally, we’ll examine the current COVID-19 vaccines and consider their effectiveness and safety. Issues regarding COVID-19 vaccine distribution will be discussed.

    January 19, 2021, 6:00 - 7:00 PM
    Via Zoom (connection details will follow!)

  • Tue
    26
    Jan
    2021
    4:00 pmZoom Meeting. See Below.

    Karl Warburton
    Department of Physics and Astronomy
    Iowa State University

    Machine Learning in Long-Baseline Neutrino Oscillation Experiments

    Neutrinos, the most abundant massive particle in the Universe have profoundly influenced its evolution, but are still the least understood fermion in the Standard Model (SM). The 2015 Nobel Prize in Physics was awarded to T. Kajita and A. McDonald following numerous experimental observations of neutrino oscillations, the process by which neutrinos created in one flavor state are observed interacting as different flavor states after traveling a given distance. This colloquium will cover two experiments focused on furthering our understanding of this phenomenon. NOνA is the current flagship long-baseline neutrino experiment in the USA and consists of two functionally identical, finely granulated detectors that are separated by 809 km. The NOνA three flavor neutrino oscillation results presented in June 2020 will be discussed with particular focus given to the impact that machine learning algorithms had increasing the sensitivity of the analysis. These algorithms use topological features for the reconstruction of neutrino interaction flavor and particle identification. The colloquium will conclude with an exploration of how machine learning tools will inform the physics reach of DUNE, a planned long-baseline neutrino experiment, which will begin data-taking in the mid-2020s.

     

    Join Zoom Meeting
    https://olemiss.zoom.us/j/91928227187

    Meeting ID: 919 282 27187

  • Tue
    02
    Feb
    2021
    4:00 pmZoom Meeting. See Below.

    Deep Medhi
    Department of Computer Science & Electrical Engineering
    University of Missouri — Kansas City

    Interdisciplinary Science: Connecting Physics, Computer Science and Statistics with Computer Networking

    The image of a black hole from April 2019 was widely seen by millions of people all over the world. To make this happen, it transcended traditional boundaries of a scientific discipline. In this talk, I will discuss examples such as black hole imaging and Large Hadron Collider for high energy physics, and connect them with computer science and statistics, and how computer networking plays a role.

     

     

    Join Zoom Meeting
    https://olemiss.zoom.us/j/91928227187

    Meeting ID: 919 282 27187

  • Tue
    09
    Feb
    2021
    4:00 pmZoom Meeting. See Below.

    Katelin Schutz
    Department of Physics
    Massachusetts Institute of Technology

    Making Dark Matter out of Light

    Dark matter could be a “thermal-ish” relic of freeze-in, where the dark matter is produced by extremely feeble interactions with Standard Model particles dominantly at low temperatures. In this talk, I will discuss how sub-MeV dark matter can be made through freeze-in, accounting for a dominant channel where the dark matter gets produced by the decay of plasmons (photons that have an in-medium mass in the primordial plasma of our Universe). I will also explain how the resulting non-thermal dark matter velocity distribution can impact cosmological observables.

     

    Join Zoom Meeting
    https://olemiss.zoom.us/j/91928227187

    Meeting ID: 919 282 27187

  • Tue
    16
    Feb
    2021
    4:00 pmZoom Meeting. See Below.

    Mike Wallbank
    Physics Department
    University of Cincinnati
    Searching for Sterile Neutrinos using Antineutrino Oscillations with the NOνA Experiment

    The NOνA experiment consists of two functionally identical liquid scintillator detectors to study neutrino oscillations over an 810 km baseline using Fermilab's NuMI neutrino beam. In additional to world- leading studies of oscillations between the three known neutrino flavors, NOνA is searching for evidence of oscillations involving an additional, sterile, neutrino. Despite observations of neutrino oscillations from the majority of experiments being consistent with a 3-neutrino mixing framework, results from LSND and MiniBooNE are incompatible with this model but could be explained by incorporating a sterile neutrino state. These intriguing results are not conclusive and are in tension with findings from other short-baseline and long-baseline experiments.
    I will describe the NOνA experiment and show the latest oscillation results, including a novel sterile search using antineutrinos, and discuss the allowed limits on the mixing angles governing the oscillations. I will also talk about future improvements to the oscillation analyses, in particular highlighting an ongoing test beam program designed to improve our understanding of the detectors and allow more precise analyses through a reduction of the uncertainties.

    Join Zoom Meeting
    https://olemiss.zoom.us/j/91928227187

    Meeting ID: 919 282 27187

  • Tue
    16
    Feb
    2021
    6:00 pmVia Zoom (connection details will follow!)

    Dr. Nicholas Timme
    Department of Psychology,
    Indiana University – Purdue University

    Examining Compulsive Drinking in a Rodent Model of Alcohol Use Disorder

    Alcohol use disorder (AUD) is a devastating disease that negatively affects millions of Americans and costs billions of dollars a year. A key feature of AUD is compulsive drinking, wherein a person continues to consume alcohol despite negative consequences. In this month’s Science Café, we will discuss general theories of AUD and my research on compulsive drinking in a rodent model of AUD. In addition, I’ll talk about my somewhat unusual career path from physics to neuroscience.

     

    February 16, 2021, 6:00 - 7:00 PM
    Via Zoom (connection details will follow!)

  • Tue
    23
    Feb
    2021
    4:00 pmZoom Meeting. See Below.

    Carl Herickhoff
    Biomedical Engineering
    University of Memphis

    New Directions in Ultrasound Imaging Technology

    Ultrasound has become an established clinical imaging tool in recent decades due to its speed, safety, affordability, and portability, yet biomedical ultrasound technology continues to rapidly advance in new and exciting ways. This talk will give an introduction to ultrasound imaging systems and devices, while also highlighting some current fundamental and applied ultrasound research efforts: intravascular elasticity imaging, dual-frequency superharmonic contrast imaging, large-scale body scanner arrays, low-cost freehand 3D imaging, and integration with augmented-reality displays for live ultrasound image guidance.

    Join Zoom Meeting

    https://olemiss.zoom.us/j/91928227187

    Meeting ID: 919 282 27187

  • Tue
    02
    Mar
    2021
    4:00 pmZoom Meeting. See Below.

    Umberto Tamponi
    Particle Physics Group
    INFN — Torino and the University of Mississippi

    Bottomonium at the Super-B factories: QCD and new physics

    In the last 15 years, several experiments contributed to an explosion of new results on heavy QCD bound states. Today, we potentially stand at the beginning of a new wave of discoveries, with the Belle II experiment starting its data taking, BESIII moving forward into its program and the LHC experiments moving into their next phase. These new experiments, collecting much larger statistics, will not only allow to constrain the low energy QCD models, but also to study rare decays sensitive to new physics scenarios.

    In this seminar, I will first outline the basic ideas and the status of the bottomonium physics, and then describe more in detail the potential of the measurement that will be performed at the Belle II experiment, ranging from the spectroscopy of the tetraquark-like states to the study of New-physics signatures in rare and forbidden decays.

    Join Zoom Meeting

    https://olemiss.zoom.us/j/91928227187

    Meeting ID: 919 282 27187