Learning is a never-ending process at Longway Planetarium, where 45 people gathered on April 25, 2013 to hear about the latest developments in particle physics. Dr. James Alsup guided a group ranging in age from 10 to 60+ years through the intricacies of the Higgs Field and the Higgs Boson particle, two discoveries that have changed scientists’ understanding of the foundations of matter itself. While the lecture dealt with words that most of us don’t even know how to use in a sentence, e.g. Gigaelectronvolts, Quarks, Leptons, etc., the very strangeness of the subject to ordinary, un-scientific folks was a refreshment.
The mind is like a rubber band: if it isn’t stretched, the elastic begins to crumble. The Planetarium’s hour-long mini-lectures on informative and challenging topics will help you stretch your mind and learn something new, even if the only thing you learn is how much you don’t know! These free events are provided by the Charles Stewart Mott Foundation to encourage us to never cease our wonderment at the glory of the universe, from the infinite to the infinitesimal.
If you missed out on this lecture, be sure to check out the new shows coming to the Planetarium this summer. Beginning in June, the events include laser shows, How I Wonder, Nine Planets and Counting, and much more! For more information, call 810.237.3400 or visit sloanlongway.org/Longway-Planetarium.