Wednesday, Jan 29th 2020
3:10 pm in Anderson 036
A Hypothetical Concentrating Solar Dish Engine for Energy Autonomous Communities
We, as a human race, already wield the technology and resources to not just provide for every living person on Earth, but to do so in a sustainable and peaceful way. The obstructions that persist are therefore largely social; out of habit and fear, we maintain systems of economic disparity, dependence, and exploitation of resources human and otherwise. However, as empowered and interconnected individuals, we can choose to now let go of the systems that serve only the few. One proposed approach, producing a decentralized network of energy nodes, can be realized by transforming the abundant power of the sun via thermal strategies. We will explore the physical principles of one such design concept: the parabolic solar-concentrating dish-engine system. A machine like this could power autonomous small-scale communities and true healing of the human-Earth relationship can begin.
Friday Jan 31st 2020
3:30 pm Anderson 036
Spintronics is the sub-field of physics revolving around the manipulation of spin degrees of freedom. Used to augment or replace the role of charge in electronic systems, the quantized nature of spin makes it a strong candidate for information storage and processing encoded in binary digits. Spintronics has its roots in magnetoelectronics, which takes advantage of spin-dependent magnetoresistive effects to produce devices such as magnetic read-heads for sensing dense storage media. In this talk I will explore fundamental principles of spin, spin-related effects, and ferromagnetism. I will also discuss how spin-based devices may solve limitations of their charge-based counterparts, such as annoying heat dissipation, and show some exciting potential applications in transistor physics and logic.
Sharan Ganjam Seshachallam Monday, Feb 3rd 2020
8:30 am Anderson 036
Quantum dots are tiny microchip structures that are created on the atomic size scale. Their unique properties make them highly prized for potential applications in modern computing, optics and electronics. Besides providing a general overview of fabrication techniques and technological applications, we will give special attention to theoretically modelling how electrons move through quantum dots. Thinking of certain shapes of quantum dots in terms of billiard ball tables, we are able to explore an interesting appearance of classical chaos in the quantum realm. In this project, we will outline the process of making semiclassical (high-energy) approximations when modeling electron motion through certain quantum dot shapes, and connect the classical notions of chaos to the behavior of quantum systems, bridging the intuitive picture of billiard ball dynamics with the less accessible idea of electron transport.