SUPA Annual Gathering 2019

SUPA Annual Gathering 2019 logo

Weds 29 May, Technology & Innovation Centre, Strathclyde

SUPA is pleased to announce the 2019 SUPA Annual Gathering and Exhibition.

The Gathering has built a reputation over the past 4 years as a showcase and celebration of world class physics research in Scotland. All SUPA PhD students and PDRAs are especially invited to attend.  As well as talks highlighting some of the latest advances in physics research across all of the SUPA Themes, the programme will offer a focus on career opportunities for early career researchers.

The programme, to be opened by Sir Jim McDonald, will include:

  • a Keynote Talk by Prof Ian Walmsley on "Building quantum machines out of light",
  • a Research Highlight Talk by Prof Catherine Heymans on “Cosmological tension in the Dark Universe? New physics or new data challenges”, 
  • talks by early career researchers,
  • selected talks by current PhD students,
  • a poster competition for graduate students
  • an exhibition of physics impact.

Eventbrite - SUPA Annual Gathering 2019

Keynote speaker: Ian Walmsley

Ian leads NQIT, Networked Quantum Information Technologies, the largest of the UK’s four Quantum Technology Hubs.  NQIT ‘s mission is to take the most advanced quantum science and develop it into viable technology for quantum simulation and computation, realised by means of networks. Ian is Provost and Professor of Experimental Physics at Imperial College London having recently moved from the University of Oxford where held the post of Pro-Vice Chancellor for Research.  He was elected 2018 President of the Optical Society of America and has previously held positions at Cornell University and the University of Rochester. Ian is a Fellow of the Optical Society of America, in 2001 of the American Physical Society, the UK Institute of Physics and the Royal Society. His research has been recognised by several awards and prizes, including the Royal Society’s Rumford Medal in 2018.

Keynote Talk: “Building quantum machines out of light”.

Light has the remarkable capacity to reveal quantum features under ambient conditions, making exploration of the quantum world feasible in the laboratory and field. Further, the availability of high-quality integrated optical components makes it possible to conceive of preparing large-scale quantum states by bringing together many different quantum light sources, manipulating them in a coherent manner and detecting them efficiently. By this route, we can envisage a scalable photonic quantum network that will facilitate the preparation of distributed quantum correlations among many light beams. This will enable a new regime of state complexity to be accessed - one for which it is impossible using classical computers to determine the structure and dynamics of the system. This is a new regime not only for scientific discovery, but also practical purpose: the same complexity of big quantum systems may be harnessed to perform tasks that are impossible using known future information processing technologies. For instance, ideal universal quantum computers may be exponentially more efficiently than classical machines for certain classes of problems, and communications may be completely secure. Photonic quantum machines will open new frontiers in quantum science and technology.

Research Highlight speaker: Catherine Heymans

Catherine Heymans is Professor of Astrophysics at the University of Edinburgh, Director of the GCCL Institute in Germany and a European Research Council Fellow. She specialises in observing the dark side of our Universe using deep sky observations to test whether we need to go beyond Einstein with our current theory of gravity. Catherine has co-authored over 150 articles in scientific journals and written the popular science book “The Dark Universe”. Catherine shares her research with the public, both virtually through a Massive Open Online Course `AstroTech' which has attracted over 40,000 students worldwide, and in person through a wide range of events including Art, Music and Science Festivals. In recognition of her work she was awarded the 2017 Darwin Lectureship from the Royal Astronomical Society and the 2018 Max-Planck Humboldt Research Award.  

Research Highlight talk: Cosmological tension in the Dark Universe? New physics or new data challenges

With the increasing precision of a wide range of cosmology experiments, tensions are starting to appear in the previously concordant model of a Universe comprised of Dark Matter and Dark Energy. Examples are the discordance between direct measurements of the Hubble expansion rate and the clustering of dark matter, in comparison to their predicted values from cosmic microwave background (CMB) measurements of the Universe right after the Big Bang. In this talk I’ll review the Kilo Degree Survey that studies the growth of structures and the expansion history of the Universe using weak gravitational lensing. As our analysis also finds a low-redshift universe that is in tension with the predictions of the Planck CMB experiment, I’ll discuss whether recent results are our first hint that the Universe is rather more exotic than the standard dark universe model would suggest, or whether this is a sign that new data challenges lie ahead.

Eventbrite - SUPA Annual Gathering 2019