FRANK CLOSE


 

 

Frank Close 

Tuesday, December 6, 7:00 p.m.

The Infinity Puzzle: Quantum Field Theory and the Hunt for an Orderly Universe  

 

Speculation is rife that by 2012 the elusive Higgs boson will be found at the Large Hadron Collider. If found, the Higgs boson would help explain why everything has mass. But there’s more at stake—what we’re really testing is our capacity to make the universe reasonable.

Our best understanding of physics is predicated on something known as quantum field theory. Unfortunately, in its raw form, it doesn’t make sense—its outputs are physically impossible infinite percentages when they should be something simpler, like the number 1. The kind of physics that the Higgs boson represents seeks to “renormalize” field theory, forcing equations to provide answers that match what we see in the real world. 

Frank Close is a Professor of Theoretical Physics at Oxford University and Fellow and Tutor in Physics at Exeter College, Oxford. He is the winner of the Kelvin Medal for the public understanding of physics and the author of ten books. He lives in Abingdon, England. 

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Event date: 
Tuesday, December 6, 2011 - 7:00pm
Event address: 
1010 El Camino Real
94025-4349 Menlo Park
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