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Caltech researchers presenting at AAAS Meeting
Date:2/17/2010

This year's American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) meeting is being held in San Diego, Feb. 19-22. Eight Caltech-associated researchers will be presenting on topics ranging from linear colliders to climate change to earthquake science, lasers, and space/time. Also occurring at the end of this year's meeting will be the installation of Caltech's Alice Huang as the next president of the AAAS. Below is a brief description of Caltech-affiliated presentations from this year's AAAS program:

Friday, Feb. 19

The Arrow of Time

Presenter: Sean Carroll: Senior Research Associate in Physics

Title: From the Cosmos to the Kitchen

One of the most obvious facts about the universe is that the past is different from the future. The world around us is full of irreversible processes: we can turn an egg into an omelet, but can't turn an omelet into an egg. Physicists have codified this difference into the Second Law of Thermodynamics: the entropy of a closed system always increases with time. In the 19th century, Ludwig Boltzmann explained why entropy tends to increase, but only under the assumption that it starts out small to begin with. The initially low entropy can only be explained by cosmology: why was the early universe in such a special state? We don't know the answer, but modern theories lead us to think about the multiverse and what happened before the Big Bang.

Time: 1:50 - 2:10 PM Location: Conv. Center Room 11B


Saturday, Feb. 20

Sarton Memorial Lecture: Knowledge in the Early Modern Era: The origins of Experimental Error

Presenter: Jed Z. Buchwald, Doris and Henry Dreyfuss Professor of History at Caltech

Buchwald has written books and articles on the histories of optics and electromagnetism, and continues to work and publish in these areas. Since arriving at Caltech, his interests also include issues that arose in the
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Contact: Jon Weiner
jrweiner@caltech.edu
626-395-3226
California Institute of Technology
Source:Eurekalert

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