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Public Evening Lectures


Lise-Meitner-Lecture (in English)

Tuesday, 31 March 2020, 18:30 Uhr, H-Aula
Prof. Dr. Claudia Draxl, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin

is speaking about


“Quantum-based Materials Modeling and Artificial Intelligence for Tackling Societal Challenges”




Materials science has crucial impact on the prosperity and lifestyle of our society, since essentially every new commercial product employs improved or even novel materials. This concerns the energy sector, transportation, information technology, medical devices, and more. The number of possible materials is practically infinite, and the variety of different mechanisms controlling their properties and functions is enormous.


What is the role of theory in understanding and shaping the intricate interplay of different interactions? This talk will provide a guided tour through the diversity of computational materials science, showing how modern many-body concepts and computational approaches can capture various effects, taking place on the electronic and atomistic scale, and can predict new materials with tailored properties. Such ``computer experiments'' -- known as the third paradigm of materials research -- are now producing enormous amounts of data which, in turn, form a precious raw material of the 21st century. That way, data-driven materials science is realizing a fourth paradigm of our research field. I will discuss how research data can be exploited to create much more knowledge beyond what is typically published in journals and what challenges we are facing when including experimental data in this type of research.



Public Evening Talk (in German)

Wednesday, 1 April 2020, 20:00, H-Aula
Prof. Dr. Harald Lesch, Universitäts-Sternwarte, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München

is speaking about


“Wie entstand unser Sonnensystem?”




In den letzten 25 Jahren sind mehrere Tausend Planetensysteme um andere Sterne herum, entdeckt worden. Deshalb können wir heute ein neues Bild der Entstehung solcher Systeme zeichnen. Von ganz besonderem Interesse ist dabei unser eigenes Planetensystem. Im Vergleich zu den extrasolaren Planetensystemen, hat es einerseits einige ganz besondere Eigenschaften, die auf die besonderen Bedingungen seiner Entstehung zurückzuführen sind. Andererseits lässt es sich aber auch mit anderen Planeten vergleichen und es können Gemeinsamkeiten herausgearbeitet werden.


Der Vortrag lässt Augenzeugen „zu Wort kommen“, die vor mehr als 4,5 Milliarden Jahren dabei waren. Es wird sich herausstellen, dass eine Supernova explodieren musste, aber auch, dass viele mögliche Katastrophen nicht passiert sind.



Max-Von-Laue-Lecture (in English)

Thursday, 2 April 2020, 20:00, H-Aula
Prof. Dr. Steve Fetter, University of Maryland, College Park, USA

is speaking about


“What physicists can do to improve international security?”



After developing nuclear weapons, physicists were at the forefront in alerting policymakers and the public to the dangers of nuclear war. National academies, non-governmental organizations, and individual scientists helped conceive and promote arms control concepts and develop verification technologies which formed the foundation for treaties that enhanced international security and stability. That foundation is now crumbling, as treaties are discarded and a new generation of nuclear weapon systems is under development. Moreover, new security challenges are arising from emerging technologies, including quantum sensors and computing; artificial intelligence, machine learning, and robotics; cybersecurity; small satellites; and gene synthesis and editing. The physics community can play an important role in educating policymakers and the public about these risks and how they can be reduced.



The Lise Meitner Lecture, the Public Evening Talk and the Max-von-Laue-Lecture are open for all conference participants and interested public. The entrance is free.