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Fermilab Lecture Series presents:
The Sounds of Spacetime: Black Holes, Early Universe, Cosmic Strings, and Holographic Noise
Dr. Craig Hogan
Director, Fermilab Center for Particle Astrophysics & University of Chicago
Friday, November 13, 2009 @ 8 p.m.- Tickets $7

Using lasers and mirrors, it is now possible to measure distances between things a mile apart to a precision ten thousand times smaller than an atomic nucleus. This amazing capability will, in the next decade, lead to a completely new way of studying the universe, by directly sensing the vibrations of spacetime caused by motions of distant bodies. The talk will survey the new technology and some of the sources, including the most powerful, such as mergers of binary black holes, as well as the most exotic, such as vibrations of cosmic strings. In some theories these machines may also detect "holographic noise" caused by the quantum character of spacetime. There is some evidence that this noise may have already been detected; if so, we may be able to directly measure the fundamental interval of time itself.

Craig Hogan grew up in Los Angeles. He graduated from Harvard College and went on to King's College, Cambridge, earning his Ph.D. there at the Institute of Astronomy in 1980. He held postdoctoral prize fellowships at the University of Chicago and Caltech, and was a professor at the University of Arizona before moving to the University of Washington in Seattle in 1990 as a professor in the Astronomy and Physics departments. From 1995 to 2001 he served as Chair of Astronomy, in 2001-2002 as Divisional Dean of Natural Sciences in the College of Arts and Sciences, and from 2002-2005 as Vice Provost for Research. In 2008 he joined the faculty of the University of Chicago and was appointed Director of the Fermilab Center for Particle Astrophysics.

Hogan’s scholarship in cosmology has been recognized by an Alfred P. Sloan Foundation Fellowship and a Humboldt Research Award. As a member of the High-z Supernova Search Team he co-discovered cosmic “Dark Energy” in 1998, and was a co-recipient of the Gruber Cosmology Prize in 2007. He is currently a member of the LISA International Science Team, which is developing a spacecraft system to detect gravitational radiation. He serves as an adviser to several large research enterprises and chairs the committee advising NASA’s Astrophysics Division. His primer on cosmology, "The Little Book of the Big Bang," is available in Dutch, Portuguese, German, Italian, Spanish, Greek, and Polish translations. Currently his studies center on ways to study the nature of quantum geometry and measure of the fundamental interval of time.


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