Public Lectures

Ever wonder what goes on at SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory? The SLAC Public Lecture Series is your chance to find out! The evening lectures highlight the cutting-edge science happening at the laboratory. From the nanotechnology of diamonds to the latest Higgs Boson discoveries, SLAC public lectures provide non-scientists with a unique insight into the workings of our universe. 

SLAC celebrates 60 years of science and discovery. In our anniversary year, our lecture topics feature discoveries and solutions for tomorrow's challenges.

Scheduled Lecture

Seeing the Universe through Quantum Eyes

Cyndia Yu ,
Thursday, June 02, 2022 7:00 pm
Public Lecture Poster: Seeing the Universe through Quantum Eyes

This will be a hybrid event. Register here to watch in person in the Panofsky Auditorium, or watch online. The link to watch online will be posted on this page on June 2.

Since the earliest times, we humans have attempted to understand and explain the world around us by observing our surroundings. By building tools such as telescopes and microscopes, we have been able to see phenomena ranging from the cosmological scale to the nanoscale, and, on the way, we have learned a huge amount about how our world works. As we scientists seek to measure ever fainter signals to uncover the workings of our universe, we have learned to take advantage of the mysterious quantum world to unlock ever more sensitive "eyes." In quantum mechanics, nothing seems to work the way we might expect—a weirdness that we can leverage to build the world's most sensitive detectors. In this lecture, I will discuss how some of these amazing sensors work, and I will describe some of my work building new quantum tools to measure the universe as well as some of SLAC's other efforts as a leader in this nascent field of quantum sensing. 

How to watch:
The public lecture will be held in person at SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory, in the Panofsky Auditorium in the Science & User Support Building (SUSB). Parking is free and can be found in front of the SUSB. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. The lecture will start promptly at 7 pm and conclude at 8 p.m. There will be opportunities to chat with the speaker following the event.

Register here  to attend the lecture in person. The public lecture will also be live-streamed for online viewing. You do not need to register if you plan to watch online. In addition, the lecture will be recorded and uploaded to SLAC’s YouTube Channel a few weeks following the talk. 

COVID-19 safety protocols:
SLAC’s current COVID-19 safety protocols for visitors attending an on site event include 1) wearing of a mask (acceptable masks include: cloth layered with a disposable surgical mask, KN95, N95 or KF94) and 2) documentation of vaccination, or proof of a negative result from a COVID-19 molecular test taken within 72 hours of your visit. At-home antigen test kits are not acceptable. To join the public lecture in person, you are required to follow these protocols and all instructions from SLAC staff. We will provide updates to this page if there are any changes to SLAC’s COVID-19 safety protocols.


About the Speaker:
Cyndia Yu

Cyndia Yu is a graduate student in physics at Stanford. Her research with Lead Scientist Zeeshan Ahmed and Professor Chao-Lin Kuo focuses on building new tools to observe light signals from the birth of the universe. As a member of the BICEP/Keck, South Pole Observatory, Simons Observatory, and CMB-S4 collaborations, she works with colleagues around the world to build and operate some of the most sensitive instruments ever constructed to study the cosmos. Outside of the lab, she enjoys hiking, gardening, and baking.

Public Lecture Highlights

Learn more about the work that we do by watching from our collection of popular recordings from our YouTube Playlist that highlights the breadth of our research.

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