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CM - AMO SEMINAR | Higgs Bosons and Superconductors in the Lab and throughout the Universe

Tuesday, March 24, 2015
4:00 AM
335 West Hall

High-energy particle physics and condensed matter physics have shared many insights for decades. Superconductivity is a primary example of this fruitful collaboration of ideas. The purpose of this talk is to sort out the analogous from the unique in the two different domains, in particular the meaning of the ordered phase and the propagating Higgs boson of superconducting transitions in materials and electroweak symmetry breaking throughout the universe. Recently Anderson has said that “Maybe the Higgs boson [of particle physics] is fictitious!” I give a charitable interpretation of his statement, explain why particle physicists are still at the Ginzburg-Landau stage of understanding, and discuss how BCS-like theories are inspiring particle physicists in their search for the next level of understanding.