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Inaugural C.N. Yang Colloquium Series Features Nobel Prize Winner Barry Barish

Barry barish new
Barry barish new
Barry Barish

Barry Barish, a 2017 Nobel Laureate in Physics and Distinguished Professor of Physics at the University of California Riverside, will be the featured speaker at the inaugural lecture of the C.N. Yang Colloquium Series in the Department of Physics and Astronomy on Tuesday, September 6.

The series honors 1957 Nobel Laureate in Physics and Stony Brook University faculty member C.N. Yang, the namesake of the C.N. Yang Institute for Theoretical Physics at Stony Brook University.

The lecture will be delivered in person at 4:30 pm at the Simons Center for Geometry and Physics, in the Della Pietra Family Auditorium, Room 103. The event will be livestreamed here. A reception will immediately follow the talk.

The title of Barish’s lecture is “Probing the Universe with Gravitational Waves.” Barish will discuss his Nobel-winning research and how the discovery of gravitational waves, predicted by Albert Einstein in 1916, is enabling both important tests of the theory of general relativity and the birth of a new astronomy. Modern astronomy, involving all types of electromagnetic radiation, is providing an understanding of the complexities of the universe and how it has evolved. The detection of gravitational waves that affords scientists another tool for astronomy besides electromagnetic radiation and the emergence and prospects for this new science will be part of the lecture.

“I am very excited to give the inaugural C.N. Yang lecture,” Barish said. “He has been a hero of mine since I was a young student. I recall my amazement learning about his revolutionary theory that nature is not perfectly symmetrical for certain decays of elementary particles.”

Barish was awarded the 2017 Nobel Prize in Physics “for decisive contributions to the LIGO detector and the observation of gravitational waves.” He shared the prize with American physicists Rainer Weiss and Kip S. Thorne.

Yang and Tsung-Dao Lee received the 1957 Nobel Prize in Physics for their work on parity non-conservation of weak interaction. Yang is also known for his collaboration with Robert Mills in developing non-abelian gauge theory, widely known as the Yang–Mills theory. Yang came to Stony Brook in 1965 and was named the Albert Einstein Professor of Physics and the first director of the newly founded Institute for Theoretical Physics, which now bears his name. He retired from Stony Brook University in 1999, assuming the title Emeritus Professor. In 2010, Stony Brook honored Yang’s contributions to the university by naming its newest dormitory building C. N. Yang Hall.

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