Brookhaven Lecture

"455th Brookhaven Lecture: 'Challenges in Accelerating and Colliding Polarized Beams'"

Presented by Vadim Ptitsyn, Ph.D., Collider-Accelerator Department

Wednesday, February 17, 2010, 4:00 pm — Berkner Hall Auditorium

At the Relativistic Heavy Ion Collider (RHIC), scientists are investigating not only the primordial properties of the universe but also another fundamental question of particle physics: the property of "spin." A particle's spin comes from its intrinsic angular momentum and is a basic property such as charge or mass. Many existing and future high energy and nuclear physics experiments rely on accessing spin. These experiments require using beams of polarized particles, which have their spins all pointing in one direction. When used as a probe of matter, beams of polarized particles reveal details of fundamental interactions not accessible with unpolarized particles. Experiments using polarized beams also need accelerators capable of accelerating and colliding such beams while preserving polarization. Achieving this, as in so many extraordinary feats that make science discoveries possible, is easier said than done.

Hosted by: Stephen Musolino

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