The memorial service for Prof. Rawitscher will be Saturday, Sept. 15 at 2pm in the Storrs Congregational Church, 2 North Eagleville Rd., Storrs, CT 06268.
The quantum materials group is hosting a workshop on quantum phenomena in materials. Find out more here.
Dynamic Quantum Matter, Entangled orders and Quantum Criticality Workshop
Dates: June 18- June 19, 2018
UConn, NSF, Nordita, Villum Center for Dirac Materials, Institute for Materials Science â Los Alamos, Wiley Publishers
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The conference will focus on entangled and non-equilibrium orders in quantum materials. The 21st century marked the revolution of probing matter at the nano- to mesoscale and these developments continue to be the focus of active research. We now witness equally powerful developments occurring in our understanding, ability to probe, and manipulate quantum matter, in entangled orders and novel states, in the time domain. Recent progress in experimental techniques including x-ray optics, optical pumping, time resolved spectroscopiesÂ (ARPES optics), and in cold-atom systems has led to a resurgence of interest in the non-equilibrium aspect of quantum dynamics. The novel entangled orders that have nonzero âoverlapâ with more than one order parameter also have emerged as an exciting new direction for research in quantum matter. Entangled orders go beyond the conventional orders such as density and spin, and significantly expand the possible condensates we can observe. It is only because of the lack of experimental control, resolution, theoretical framework, and computational power, that the realm of entangled and quantum non-equilibrium remained largely unexplored until now. The time has come for us to turn full attention to these phenomena. Specific topics include: superconductivity and dynamics near quantum criticality, composite orders in correlated materials, effects of strain on quantum critical points, and superconductivity in STO. This conference will have a format of topical lectures, while leaving ample time for discussions.
Gurneyâs Resorts | Newport, RI
Fermilab Distinguished Scholars are rotating multi-year appointments for U.S. theorists in either the Fermilab Theoretical Physics Department or the Theoretical Astrophysics Group.
The Fermilab Distinguished Scholars program aims to:
- Strengthen connections between the Fermilab Theoretical Physics and Astrophysics groups and the wider U.S. particle-theory community.
- Broaden the Fermilab theoretical-physics research program through collaborations between the Fermilab Distinguished Scholars and Fermilab theory staff, postdocs, and students.
- Strengthen connections between the U.S. particle-theory community and the Fermilab experimental program.
- Increase the frequency and quality of interactions between U.S. particle theorists and Fermilab experimentalists.
- Increase resident theoretical expertise in targeted physics areas to support the Fermilab experimental program.
For more information see Fermilab Distinguished Scholars Program
Professor Vernon F. Cormier from the Department of Physics, University of Connecticut has received a grant from the National Science Foundation to study the transition from liquid to solid in the Earth’s core using seismic wave measurements. Cormier’s project will determine the structure of the Earth’s inner core in relation to the processes that affect its cooling, solidification and connection with the flowing liquid metals of the outer core.
For more information see the article in “UConn Today”
Friday afternoon on April 20, 2018 the UConn Physics Department held a colloquium in honor of Professor Douglas Hamilton on the occasion of his retirement from active service on the faculty. The colloquium was MC’ed by Prof. Jason Hancock, who surveyed the highlights of a career spanning four decades marked by notable accomplishments in research, teaching, and service. Several of Doug’s former students also presented tributes to their mentor, some in person, and some by video or written message, expressing their gratitude for what they learned from him, both by instruction and example. At the end of the hour, Doug presented some final comments, which were followed by a standing ovation in recognition of Doug’s many contributions to our field, our department, and the University.
The 21st Annual Katzenstein Distinguished Lecture was hosted by the UConn Physics Department, featuring Dr. Takaaki Kajita, 2015 Nobel Prize Winner from the University of Tokyo, speaking on “Oscillating Neutrinos.” After the lecture, a banquet with the speaker was held for members and guests of the department. We enjoyed welcoming alumni and visitors to the department for this special occasion, made possible by a generous gift from UConn Physics alumnus Henry Katzenstein and his family.
It is with great sorrow that we report the passing of our long-time colleague and friend, George Rawitscher on March 10, 2018, after a brief illness and just having passed his 90th birthday, which was celebrated with a cake at a meeting of the
UConn Physics Department. George was born in 1928 in Germany, where his father was a distinguished Professor of Botany at The University of Freiburg.
In 1934 his father, Felix Rawitscher who was Jewish, brought his family which included George’s mother, Charlotte Oberlander, his sister Erika, and George from Germany to Brazil to escape the Nazis. In Brazil, Felix established and chaired the Botany Department, which still bears his name, at the University of Sao Paulo. George grew up in Sao Paulo, where he learned fluent Portuguese. From an early age he knew he wanted to be a physicist, and taught himself quantum mechanics from a book during high school. He graduated in physics and mathematics from the University of Sao Paulo in 1949, and he served as an Instructor at the Brazilian Center for Physical Research in Rio de Janiero for two years, receiving a Brazilian National Research Council Fellowship. While he was in the Center for Physical Research at Rio, he worked under Richard Feynman who was a visiting professor at the same institute. He told his grandson Nicholas that Feynman had made a big mark on his life, inspiring his approach to physics, and observing that he had the potential to become a “real” physicist, which he remained until the end of his life. Following his time in Rio, George went to Stanford University as a graduate student in theoretical nuclear physics and mathematics. He received his Ph.D. in 1956, for a study of Fierz-Pauli spin 3/2 particles and the anomalous magnetic moment of the muon under Profs. Leonard Schiff and D.R. Yennie. His first paper had to do with the effect of the finite size of the nucleus on muon pair production by gamma rays. While at Stanford, George met and later married Mary Adams, a fellow Stanford student, and they proudly raised two sons, Peter and Henry. Mary, a biochemist, died in 1980. In his later years, George was again happily married to Joyce Rawitscher in 2009, who passed away in 2016.
Following his graduate work, George became an Instructor at the Physics Nuclear Structure Center (University of Rochester) for two years and then joined the Physics Department at Yale as Instructor, doing research in collaboration with Prof. Gregory Breit. He remained at Yale as Assistant Prof. of Physics until 1964. He joined the Physics Department at the University of Connecticut in Storrs as an Associate Professor and then became Professor of Physics from 1972. He retired in 2009 but remained at UConn as an emeritus Research Professor until days before his death, continuing to do active research in nuclear physics, computational physics and ultracold atomic collision physics until his final days.
Prof. Rawitscher received several prestigious academic honors including one of the early Research Fellowship awards from the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation (Germany) in 1964 and became a Fellow of the American Physical Society, nominated by the Division of Nuclear Physics in 2016.
During his tenure at the University of Connecticut, he took academic leaves at the Max Planck Institut fur Kernphysik in Heidelberg (1964-1966), the Laboratory for Nuclear Science at MIT (1972), as guest professor at the University of Surrey, England 1973, the University of Maryland (1987-1988) and served on the Board of Directors of Bates Users Theory Group at MIT (1982-1985) and the Executive Committee of the American Physical Society topical group on Few Body Systems and Multi-Particle Dynamics (1993-1995). He gave a number of invited presentations in nuclear theory at conferences, published approximately 88 refereed papers and numerous conference proceedings.
His principal research interests involved scattering problems using non-local optical models of nuclear processes, coupled-channel reaction mechanisms for nuclear break-up such as the (e,e’p) reaction, and virtual nuclear excitations. Recently he emphasized development of numerical methods such as Galerkin and spectral expansions for solving integral equations. He has applied some of these techniques to studies of ultracold atomic collisions as well as nuclear reactions. His most recent refereed papers (2015-2017) concerned “Revival of the Phase-Amplitude description of a Quantum-Mechanical wave function.”
Professor Rawitscher was an engaged and untiring participant both in his Department and in the general community up to the last moments of his life. He promoted public awareness and activism on ameliorating the effects of global climate change and he and his wife Joyce have been active in the peace movement. He was a member of the Storrs, CT Quaker Meeting. He was also active in community service in the Storrs area, for example serving on the Town of Mansfield Sustainability Committee. Recently he has been working on a nearly-finished book summarizing his lifelong expertise in numerical computational physics, under contract with Springer, with two younger colleagues from Brazil. George was a dedicated and effective undergraduate teacher and empathetic mentor to a large number of graduate students, colleagues and collaborators. George was a central member of the department for more than 50 years, and has earned a special place in our hearts forever. His inspiring presence and example will be very much missed at the University, amongst his family, friends and the community, and it was a great loss to see him go.
What: Muon g-2 Theory Initiative Hadronic Light-by-Light working group workshop
When: Starts 12 Mar 2018, 09:00; Ends 14 Mar 2018, 17:00
Where: Department of Physics, University of Connecticut, 2152 Hillside Road, Storrs, CT 06269-3046
Workshop website: https://indico.phys.uconn.edu/
Workshop participants will discuss recent progress and plans to determine the hadronic light-by-light scattering contribution to the muon anomalous magnetic moment, which is expected to contribute the largest uncertainty in the Standard Model prediction. The goal of the workshop is to estimate current and expected systematic errors from lattice QCD, dispersive methods, and models and create a plan to address them in time for new experiments at Fermilab and J-PARC.
PhD student Lukasz Kuna and undergraduate Hope Whitelock participate in a symposium “Mesoscopic phenomena in ceramic materials” arranged by Materials Scientist Serge Nakhmanson at the “Electronic and Advanced Materials Conference” in Orlando, Florida. The MSE version of the story can be found here.
A workshop on “Dynamic Quantum Matter”, sponsored by UConn, Los Alamos National Lab and Nordita – Nordic Institute for Theoretical Physics (Sweden), will be held in Newport, RI, from June 18 to 20, 2018. Local organizing committee: A. Balatsky, G. Fernando, I. Sochnikov, C. Trallero and J. Hancock.
Conference website: https://quantum-matter.uconn.edu/