The Hunt for the Higgs Boson, a lecture by Professor Vivek Sharma

In a tunnel 100 meters below the Franco-Swiss countryside, the world’s most powerful
particle accelerator, the Large Hadron Collider, roared into action in 2010. Since then, this
collider has provided more than a thousand trillion proton-on-proton collisions facilitating
the most precise probes of the subatomic universe.

SharmaPicSM (2)

The Science & Engineering Library is pleased to announce the second in a series of lectures by faculty from the Physics Department, featuring Professor Vivek Sharma.
Tuesday, February 12, 2013
3:00 – 4:30 pm
Science & Engineering Library, Events Room

The lecture is free and open to students, faculty, staff, and the public.  Light refreshments will be served.
Please register here.

Dr. Vivek Sharma, director (2010-11) of an international team for the CMS experiment, will
present a brief description of the Large Hadron Collider and the CMS and ATLAS detectors at
CERN, and then talk about the hunt for the elusive Higgs Boson, the quantum particle associated
with an all-pervading Higgs field hypothesized to explain the origin of mass in our universe.

Dr. Vivek Sharma’s research in experimental particle physics involves some of the world’s highest energy and intensity particle colliders. With the ALEPH detector he discovered two new subatomic particles,  the BS meson and the Lambda-b baryon.  His group at UCSD, working on the BaBar experiment, spearheaded the discovery of an asymmetry between matter and anti-matter in the decay of particles made of the bottom quark.  His current research involves searching for new subatomic phenomena (including the Higgs boson) using the Large Hadron Collider near Geneva, Switzerland.  Professor Sharma is a fellow of the American Physical Society.  He is the recipient of the Cottrell award, the Sloan fellowship and the UCSD Academic Senate award for distinguished teaching.

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“Going to the Ends of the Earth to Glimpse the Beginnings of Time” a lecture by Prof. Brian Keating

What would it have been like to witness the Big Bang?

The Science & Engineering Library is pleased to announce the first in a series of lectures by faculty from the Physics Department, featuring Dr. Brian Keating speaking on “Going to the Ends of the Earth to Glimpse the Beginnings of Time: Studying the Big Bang from the World’s Extremes.”

Wednesday, November 14, 2012
3:00 – 4:30 pm
Science & Engineering Library, Events Room

The lecture is free and open to students, faculty, staff, and the public.  Light refreshments will be served.
Please register here.

What was the Big Bang really like? Over the past decade sensitive astronomical telescopes have revealed the properties of the universe to unprecedented precision. Yet many mysteries remain. Foremost among them concerns the actual Big Bang itself. What would it have been like to be a witness to the Big Bang? How can we understand the mysterious nature of Dark Matter and Dark Energy which pervade our universe? UC San Diego Professor of Physics Dr. Brian Keating, and his team of undergraduate students, graduate students and postdocs, have developed extremely powerful, cutting-edge telescopes that promise to reveal the origin and composition of the universe with exquisite precision. UC San Diego’s telescopes are currently observing from the South Pole, Antarctica (9000 foot altitude) and at 17,000 feet in the Chilean Atacama desert. Professor Keating will discuss these exciting experiments and the challenges of doing extreme astronomy in the Earth’s most remote locations.

Professor Brian Keating is an astrophysicist with  UCSD’s Department of Physics and the Center for Astrophysics and Space  Sciences. He and his team of 15 undergraduates, graduate students, and postdocs develop sensitive instrumentation to study the early universe in the radio-, microwave- and infrared-wavelength regimes of the  electromagnetic spectrum. He is the author of nearly 100 scientific  publications and holds a U.S. Patent for a microwave polarization  modulator. Brian Keating received his B.S. from Case Western Reserve University and his Ph.D. from Brown University in 2000. Later, he did his postdoctoral research at Stanford University and was an NSF Postdoctoral  Fellow at Caltech before coming to UCSD in 2004. In 2007 he received the  Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers at the White House from President George W. Bush for his work on a telescope he designed and fielded at the US Amundsen-Scott South Pole Research Station.  Presently, Professor Keating is one of the leaders of a collaboration operating a telescope in the Atacama Desert of Chile called “POLARBEAR”. He is also a private pilot with single and multi-engine instrument ratings  and enjoys his frequent flights above California’s beautiful landscapes.



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Nov 1 Lecture: Two Problems in Scholarly Communication and How to Solve Them

The UCSD Center for the Humanities and Geisel Library are pleased to present:

Publishing Distress in the Sciences and Humanities: Two Problems in Scholarly Communication and How to Solve Them
Dr. Stuart Shieber, Director, Office of Scholarly Communication at Harvard University
Thursday, November 1, 2012  —  3:30 pm
Seuss Room, Geisel Library
—Reception to follow at 5:00 pm

In the sciences, research results are disseminated through the journal article. In the humanities, scholarly monographs are the predominant medium. Both distribution systems are exhibiting severe signs of distress, but the sources of the problems are quite different. I will describe the symptoms in the two modes of scholarly communication, diagnose the underlying problems, and propose treatments, some proven and some speculative. 

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Apollo Lunar Module Lands in S&E

Over the summer, the Science & Engineering Library welcomed an addition to its collection of engineering student projects.  A 1/4 scale model of the Apollo Lunar Excursion Module (LEM) can now be seen prominently displayed by the entrance to S&E.  This model was made in 1989 for the TV mini-series “From Earth to the Moon,” and afterwards was acquired by the Aerospace Legacy Foundation.  Over the years of storage, the model fell into disrepair but was recently restored by a team of Dr. John Kosmatka’s aerospace engineering undergrads, led by fourth year student Tony Tran. The restoration took the students a total of 40 hours of work over a period of two weeks, and gave them a unique perspective on early US space technology.  Tony says he learned  about the basic structure of the LEM itself and also “how to manage [my] time”.

Before landing in S&E, the model was displayed at this summer’s San Diego Fair, along with the Library’s Space Shuttle thermal protection tile.

The original LEM, built for the Apollo moon missions in the 1960’s, was used to transport the crew from the main spacecraft (Command Service Module or CSM) while in lunar orbit.  There were two components of the LEM: Descent and Ascent.  Only the upper portion, Ascent, was used to return the astronauts back to the CSM.  After docking, the Ascent stage was discarded in lunar orbit and the Descent stage was left on the moon.

During the fateful Apollo 13 mission, the LEM saved the crew’s life after an explosion damaged the CSM, preventing a lunar landing.

To learn more, come by and see the model along with photos and diagrams.




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Space Shuttle Thermal Protection Tile on Display in S&E

In 2011, as the Space Shuttle program was closing down and the Shuttles were being dismantled, NASA made available selected artifacts that had been used on the Shuttles.  The Science & Engineering Library requested and received one of thousands of Space Shuttle heat shield tiles, which you can now see up close if you visit the S&E Library.

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Tour the S&E Library during Welcome Week

The Library is the best resource in your academic toolkit for getting an assignment or class project going in the right direction.  Come in for a tour and learn where to find books, computers, printers, study areas, friendly help and much more.  Stay for refreshments and conversation at the end of the tour.

Wednesday, September 26, 11:00-11:30 am OR 2:00-2:30 pm

No need to register in advance.

Meet at the entrance to the Science & Engineering Library (East Wing of the Geisel Library.)

Contact Susan Shepherd ( for more information.


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S&E Collections Consolidation Update

From Martha Hruska, Associate University Librarian for Collection Services

While we had proposed the possibility of moving some of our science collections, we have decided that what makes the most sense at this juncture and for the next year, at least, is to keep the Engineering and Physical Sciences collections in the Geisel Library building. The Biomedical Library building will continue to house the high-use collections that support the Division of Biological Sciences, School of Medicine, and the Skaggs School of Pharmacy. This will give us time to construct, deploy, and gain experience with the new compact shelving in Geisel.

Next spring, after compact shelving has been mounted in Geisel Library to accommodate the Scripps Library collections, the Scripps Oceanographic and Physical Sciences materials will be consolidated into the Geisel Library collections, which reflects the wishes of the Scripps community.  [source]

Thank you to everyone who sent feedback. We continue to welcome all comments (concerns, questions, etc.)

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“Juggling Mathematics and Magic,” a lecture by Dr. Ron Graham

The mystery of magic and the art of juggling have surprising links to interesting ideas from mathematics.

May 31, 2012
3:00 – 4:00 pm
Science & Engineering Library Events Room

In the fourth companion lecture to the exhibit, Harry Potter’s World: Renaissance Science, Magic and Medicine,” Professor Ronald Graham, one of the world’s best known mathematicians, computer theorists, and technology visionaries, will explain the math behind magic in his talk, “Juggling Mathematics and Magic.”

Graham, who calls himself a “mathemagician” will explore the mystery of magic and the art of juggling and their surprising links to mathematical concepts. Graham is the Irwin and Joan Jacobs Professor of Computer Science and Engineering at the Jacobs School of Engineering and the co-author of Magical Mathematics: The Mathematical Ideas that Animate Great Magic Tricks. A skilled magician and juggler, Graham is the ex-president of the International Jugglers Association.

Dr. Graham will be signing copies of his book which will be available for purchase at the talk.

The talk is free and open to students, faculty, staff and the public. Light refreshments will be served.

Please register here.

More information on the exhibit and to register for other lectures in the series:



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Third Lecture in Calit2 Series: “Advanced Virtual Reality Applications”

The Science & Engineering Library is pleased to announce the third and last in a series of faculty lectures by researchers from Calit2, featuring  Dr. Jurgen Schulze speaking on “Advanced Virtual Reality Applications.”

Thursday, May 3, 2012
3:00 – 4:00 pm
Science & Engineering Library

The lecture is free and open to students, faculty, staff, and the public. Light refreshments will be served.
Please register online at

The Immersive Visualization Laboratory at the California Institute for Telecommunications and
Information Technology focuses on virtual reality (VR) software applications, which leverage its
unique features, including user tracking, 3D input devices, immersive displays, multi-user capability,
and high-end graphics hardware. In 2007, the StarCAVE was built by the Laboratory which is still
one of the most advanced virtual reality systems in the world. Since then, the NexCAVE VR system
was developed, which consists of an array of 3D TV displays instead of projectors.  This presentation will unveil some of the more recent virtual reality software applications the Laboratory has been working on.

Jurgen P. Schulze is a Research Scientist at the California Institute for Telecommunications and Information Technology (CALIT2), and a Lecturer in the Computer Science and Engineering Department at the University of California San Diego.  His research interests include scientific visualization in virtual environments, human computer interaction, real-time volume rendering, and graphics algorithms on programmable graphics hardware.  He holds an M.S. degree from the University of Massachusetts and a Ph.D. from the University of Stuttgart, Germany. After his graduation he spent two years as a post-doctoral researcher in the Computer Science Department at Brown University.

More information.




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Library Award Winners at JSOE Research Expo

Congratulations to this year’s winners of the Science & Engineering Library’s Award for Best Use of the Literature  at the Jacobs School of Engineering Research Expo.    Each won a $75 giftcard for the UCSD Bookstore, and their posters (along with others from the Expo) will be on display in the S&E Library through the Spring Quarter. Each is shown below receiving his prize from Mary Linn Bergstrom, Head of the S&E Library.

Calvin James Gardner (“Smell-o-Vision: Remotely On-Off Switchable Odor-Releasing Capsules”)






Wei Gao  (“High Efficient Microrockets and Their Biomedical Applications”)







Rauno Cavallaro (“Non Linear Aeroelastic Analysis of Joined Wing Configurations“)





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