The Nobel Prize in Physics 2016 – What is strange about strange forms of matter?

Professor Matt Davis, UQ
This colloquium will be held 12 noon, 4th November, in Parnell 07-222

From the American Physical Society:

“This year’s Nobel Prize for physics was awarded on October 4 2016, with one half to David J. Thouless of the University of Washington, Seattle, and the other half to F. Duncan M. Haldane of Princeton University and J. Michael Kosterlitz of Brown University. Their theoretical work in the early 1970s and 1980s explained phenomena in quantum states of matter, such as the quantum Hall effect and superfluid phase transitions, using the mathematical concepts of topology. Their work not only unlocked the explanation for transitions in these unusual phases of matter, but their success has now sparked an array of current research with topological materials, which could be used in future quantum computers or in new generations of electronics and superconductors.”

This colloquium will introduce the basic concepts behind this year’s Nobel Prize, and explain why it is important for current research. It aims to be accessible for undergraduate physics students.