Blogs

A Brief History of the Electron’s Shape – Part 2

Last week, we talked about how the pioneering papers in the 1950s and 60s of Purcell, Ramsey, and Sandars started off the decades-long search for imperfection in the electron’s shape, or the electron electric dipole moment (eEDM). This week, we’re going to cover some of the early beam experiments dedicated to measuring the electron EDM. … Continue reading “A Brief History of the Electron’s Shape – Part 2”

A Brief History of the Electron’s Shape – Part 1

As I’ve shared in a series of blog posts, I currently work on an experiment measuring the electric dipole moment (or EDM) of the electron. Colloquially, we like to call it the “shape” of the electron. (To be a little bit more accurate, it’s really the shape of the electric field produced by the electron.) … Continue reading “A Brief History of the Electron’s Shape – Part 1”

Reflections as a World Music Ensemble Director – Part 2

Picking up from where I left off last time, there are many more memorable events and songs from the last two years. One of my favorite moments is when I somehow got members of the Silk Road Ensemble (an ensemble founded by Yo Yo Ma which specializes in playing music from along the Silk Road and … Continue reading “Reflections as a World Music Ensemble Director – Part 2”

Reflections as a World Music Ensemble Director

Some of you might have noticed in my homepage that I list myself as music director of the Dudley World Music Ensemble at Harvard. Well, in about a week, I’ll be leading my final concert in that role before stepping down and handing the reins to the brilliant Eric Puma. (For more details of this … Continue reading “Reflections as a World Music Ensemble Director”

How Tabletop Experiments Could be the Future of Particle Physics

Just this week an article in Nature was published featuring the new activities that the Gabrielse lab (where I work) is starting up at the newly-found Center for Fundamental Physics at Northwestern. In particular, the article highlights the growing importance of relatively small-scale “tabletop” experiments like ACME to probe for new physics beyond the Standard … Continue reading “How Tabletop Experiments Could be the Future of Particle Physics”

Guide to the ACME EDM Experiment: Why CP Violation Might Explain Everything About the Universe

Why should we care about the existence of the electron electric dipole moment (EDM)? In a previous post, we established that the existence of an electron EDM would imply a violation of a symmetry in physics called CP-symmetry, or CP violation (CPV). But it isn’t clear why CPV has any importance beyond being something interesting … Continue reading “Guide to the ACME EDM Experiment: Why CP Violation Might Explain Everything About the Universe”

Guide to the ACME EDM Experiment: Symmetries in Physics

In this series so far, we’ve discussed a lot about the physics of the ACME EDM experiment: the atomic physics methods we use to look for a small asymmetry in the electron’s charge distribution. However, we’ve never tackled the big question directly: why does the electron’s charge distribution matter at all? The precision achieved on the … Continue reading “Guide to the ACME EDM Experiment: Symmetries in Physics”

Guide to the ACME EDM Experiment: Differential Measurements to the Extreme

In our overview of the ACME experiment, we outlined the broad method of the experiment: we measure the deformation in the shape of the electron by performing spin precession on the molecule ThO. In the post about atomic structure, we outlined the basics of energy levels in a molecule, as well as that of ThO itself. … Continue reading “Guide to the ACME EDM Experiment: Differential Measurements to the Extreme”

Reading Walton’s Views on Genesis, Part 4: Reworking Inerrancy

The third and final book of John Walton’s Lost World trilogy, The Lost World of Scripture (LWS), expands its scope from reading the first few chapters of Genesis to the whole Bible. Written together with New Testament (NT) specialist D. Brett Sandy, the book sets forth a more enlightened understanding of what biblical inerrancy should mean. There are … Continue reading “Reading Walton’s Views on Genesis, Part 4: Reworking Inerrancy”

What Does Day-To-Day Work Have To Do With God?

(Originally written for YMI of Our Daily Bread Ministries. I have talked about the scientific aspects ACME experiment several times in this blog. This piece gives a few glimpses into the personal and especially spiritual side of the life of a graduate student on the experiment. It explains why I feel working on ACME to be … Continue reading “What Does Day-To-Day Work Have To Do With God?”