March 26, 2004
Director of Media Relations
AMHERST, Mass.-David Hall, assistant professor of physics at Amherst College, will give the annual Max and Etta Lazerowitz Lecture, on "Bose, Einstein and the Coldest Stuff in the Universe" on Tuesday, April 13, at 4:30 p.m. in the Pruyne Lecture Hall (Fayerweather 115) at Amherst College. The talk is free and open to the public, as is a reception immediately following.
An experimental physicist with an interest in the very cold, Hall has built a laboratory at Amherst College to investigate Bose-Einstein condensates (BEC). Hall says, "Building upon seminal work by Satyendra Nath Bose, Albert Einstein predicted in 1925 that an atomic gas, cooled to sufficiently low temperature, would undergo a phase transition in which the atoms would pile up in a single quantum state" The first BEC was created in a lab in1995, when Eric Cornell and Carl Wieman at the University of Colorado at Boulder cooled a cloud of atoms to one twenty-billionth of a kelvin, the lowest temperature ever achieved at that time. Hall was later a post-doctoral fellow in the Boulder lab; Cornell, Wieman and Wolfgang Ketterle (M.I.T.) won the 2001 Nobel Prize in Physics for their work.
Hall, who has been teaching at Amherst since 1999, will focus on experimental studies performed with multiple BECs, emphasizing recent experimental results from his Amherst lab. He received a B.A. in physics from Amherst in 1991, and earned A.M. and Ph.D. degrees from Harvard University.
The Lazerowitz Lectureship is awarded each year to support and encourage members of the Amherst College faculty in their scholarly work. The Dean of the Faculty, in conjunction with the Lecture Committee, selects the recipient, a member of the faculty below the rank of a full professor, who presents a lecture on his or her research. The Max and Etta Lazerowitz Lectureship was established in 1985 to honor the parents of the late Morris Lazerowitz, emeritus professor of philosophy at Smith College.