Kavli Institute For Theoretical Physics
The KITP Public Lecture Series

The Radiant Universe: The Story of Electromagnetic Waves

sponsored by Friends of KITP

This lecture will cover how humans came to know and exploit the nature of light and the invisible radiation beyond the colors we see. Beginning with Isaac Newton's inspired experiments as a 23-year-old university student during the plague year of 1666, you will learn about the pivotal steps along the path to the cell phone in your hand! Professor Jacobson will illustrate how fundamental progress in physics results from curiosity, observation, ingenuity, and abstraction.

About the Speaker 

Ted Jacobson earned a BA at Reed College and a PhD at the University of Texas, Austin. After postdoctoral positions at UCSB and Brandeis, he joined the University of Maryland faculty in 1988, where he is now a Distinguished University Professor.

His numerous research interests have included quantum gravity, black hole thermodynamics and Hawking radiation, condensed matter analogs of quantum fields in curved spacetime, constraints on Lorentz symmetry violation, and force-free plasmas. He is the recipient of a University of Maryland Distinguished Scholar-Teacher Award, and is a Fellow of the American Physical Society and the American Association for the Advancement of Science. He holds a Distinguished Visiting Research Chair position at Perimeter Institute in Waterloo, Canada.