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Next Brookhaven Lecture

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Refreshments will be served before and after the lecture.  Brookhaven Lectures are free and open to the Public. Visitors to the Laboratory age 16 and older must bring photo ID.

About the Brookhaven Lecture Series

From the “Foreword” to the first of the Brookhaven Lectures,
by Gertrude Scharff-Goldhaber (1960)

Gertrude Scharff-Goldhaber

Gertrude Scharff-Goldhaber

The Brookhaven Lectures, held by and for the Brookhaven staff, are meant to provide an intellectual meeting ground for all scientists of the Laboratory. In this role they serve a double purpose: they are to acquaint the listeners with new developments and ideas not only in their own field, but also in other important fields of science, and to give them a heightened awareness of the aims and potentialities of Brookhaven National Laboratory.

Before describing some recent research or the novel design and possible uses of a machine or apparatus, the lecturers attempt to familiarize the audience with the background of the topic to be treated and to define unfamiliar terms as far as possible.

Of course we are fully conscious of the numerous hurdles and pitfalls which necessarily beset such a venture. In particular, the difference in outlook and method between physical and biological sciences presents formidable difficulties. However, if we wish to be aware of progress in other fields of science, we have to consider each obstacle as a challenge which can be met.

The lectures are found to yield some incidental rewards which heighten their spell: In order to organize his talk the lecturer has to look at his work with a new, wider perspective, which provides a satisfying contrast to the often very specialized point of view from which he usually approaches his theoretical or experimental research. Conversely, during the discussion period after his talk, he may derive valuable stimulation from searching questions or technical advice received from listeners with different scientific backgrounds. The audience, on the other hand, has an opportunity to see a colleague who may have long been a friend or acquaintance in a new and interesting light.