Popular science in conjunction with Bildmuseet's current exhibition Entangle / Physics and the Artistic Imagination. Listen to short talks by physicists from Umeå University about the fundamental forces that shape our world. This Sunday you will meet Ph.D. Student Robin Ekman and professor Michael Bradley. Each short lecture will take about 20–25 minutes, and afterwards there will be time for questions.
What matter and light consist of is a question asked since antiquity. At Bildmuseet, Robin Ekman will talk about the development from the idea of indivisible atoms to the standard model of particle physics. Among other things, he will discuss the nature of matter and light as both wave- and particle-like, the prediction and discovery of anti-matter, and the role of the Higgs particle. We will also hear about some unanswered questions, including why there is so much more matter than anti-matter, and what kinds of undiscovered particles may exist.
Robin Ekman is in his final year as Ph.D. student at Umeå University. His dissertation project is focused on quantum mechanical effects in plasmas. Besides that, his interests are in fundamental and particle physics.
Michael Bradley's talk at Bildmuseet will focus on the dark side of the universe. He will and tell us about the elusive and thought-provoking phenomena dark energy and dark matter.
The universe started its development from a very dense and hot state, the Big Bang, and has then expanded and cooled. The expansion is still ongoing, but since the universe is influenced by its own gravity, the expansion rate should slowly decrease. On the contrary, observations show that the expansion rate increases, as if some mysterious force is trying to stretch the universe out! The various explanations for this phenomenon usually gather under the term 'dark energy'.
This is not to be confused with 'dark matter'. Studies show that most of the matter of the universe is of a different kind than the stuff we and our surroundings are made of. Dark matter does not interact with light and is therefore invisible, hence the name. Estimates suggest that its total mass is about five times the total mass of "ordinary" matter.
Michael Bradley is a Professor of Physics at Umeå University. His research has mainly concerned problems in general relativity, as for example models for rotating stars and propagation of gravity waves in cosmological models.