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DEPARTMENT COLLOQUIUM | The Magic of Physics

Wednesday, January 13, 2010
12:00 AM
340 West Hall

Speaker: Fred Becchetti (UM Physics)

The public (as well as students) are generally fascinated by magic. Like others, Professor Becchetti has exploited this by incorporating stage magic, illusions and other effects into his physics lectures, a summer H.S. science camp, as well as public lectures. However, unlike others who often use magic unrelated to any physics per se, Professor Becchetti has incorporated (or developed) magic that has a direct relevance to a specific physics topic and the the "magic" of Nature revealed in physics research: Penetration effects: quantum-mechanical tunneling and radioactive decay, the age of the Earth and evolution. Mentalism and predictions: the relevancy of time (relativity) and the possibility of time travel (or not). Vanishing effects: matter-anti-matter and the Big Bang. Math-based magic: the quark model, etc. Several of the above will be demonstrated.

 

Refreshments at 3:30 p.m. in 337 West Hall