Events & Seminars > Event Details


7:00 pm
Room 190, Gilmer Hall

Once Upon a Time in Kamchatka: The Extraordinary Search for Natural Quasicrystals


Professor Paul Steinhardt
Princeton University

Hosted by: Professors Kateri DuBay & Jill Venton

Quasicrystals are exotic materials that have symmetries that were once thought to be impossible for matter. The first known examples were synthesized in the laboratory over 30 years ago, but could Nature have beaten us to the punch? This talk will describe the search that took over a dozen years to answer this question, resulting in one of the strangest scientific stories you are ever likely to hear.


Dr. Steinhardt is the Albert Einstein Professor in Science and Director of the Princeton Center for Theoretical Science at Princeton University. He is a Fellow in the American Physical Society and a member of the National Academy of Sciences. He shared the P.A.M. Dirac Medal in 2002 for his contributions to the inflationary model of the universe; the Oliver E. Buckley Prize of the American Physical Society in 2010 for his contribution to the theory of quasicrystals; and the John Scott Award in 2012 for his search and discovery of the first natural quasicrystals. He is the author of over 200 refereed articles, ten patents, three technical books, and, in 2007, co-authored Endless Universe: The Big Bang and Beyond, a popular book on contemporary theories of cosmology.