APS News

Centennial: Unit Exhibits

Cover of the Centennial Meeting Program sent to all APS members in September.
Cover of the Centennial Meeting Program sent to all APS members in September. Photos courtesy of (from left to right): Contemporary Physics Education Project, University of Pittsburg; Anglo-Australian Observatory, Epping Australia; ISIS, Rutherford Appleton Laboratory; Charles Townes; Brookhaven National Laboratory; AIP Niels Bohr Library; and P. Tuffy, University of Edinburgh.

Almost all of the APS units are developing topical exhibits on subjects of concern to their respective charters for the upcoming APS Centennial Meeting in Atlanta, Georgia. A listing of the displays planned at this time, with a brief description, is below.

Division of Astrophysics
One strongly visual display will link the contributions of astrophysics to other disciplines. A second exhibit will include interactive displays of astronomical images via computer terminals.

Division of Biological Physics
Slide shows will feature the varied applications of nonlinear dynamics, with the main focus on biological applications. Computers will be available for interactive participation.

Division of Chemical Physics
One display will feature magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) accompanied by a user-friendly Web site. A second display will explore combustion chemistry.

Division of Computational Physics
The display will feature a series of live demonstrations of computational physics, using a work station and/or the Immersadisk (3-D interactive). A poster on the impact of physics on computing will also be produced.

Division of Condensed Matter Physics
The display will consist of a series of posters describing the history of the many different sub-areas of condensed matter physics.

Division of Fluid Dynamics
The display will present the 1998 winning entries for the division's annual Gallery of Fluid Motion: pictorial displays obtained from physical or numerical experiments which are intriguing, novel or revealing of intricate physical mechanisms.

Division of High Polymer Physics
The exhibit will combine a poster-board backdrop highlighting the historical use of physics in the field of polymer science with interactive computers to educate users about a variety of polymer characteristics and uses.

Division of Laser Science
The exhibit will include demonstrations highlighting laser history and applications at the forefront of science, medicine, fiber optic communications, and education.

Division of Nuclear Physics
The theme of the exhibit is the role of the nucleus as the center of the atom and the heart of all matter around us. The exhibit will focus on the current major scientific thrusts, selected applications and education.

Division of Particles and Fields
The display will present an introduction to elementary particle physics using three computers running "A Particle Adventure," as well as a demonstration of the existence of particles using an optical spark chamber.

Division of Physics of Beams
The exhibit will feature joint displays with laboratories active in the use and construction of accelerator systems for nuclear and high energy physics, and for synchrotron radiation.

Division of Plasma Physics
Three displays are planned: plasmas, kiosks and a backdrop. Two areas will be interactive with active plasmas and interactive computer kiosks, with a large graphic plasmas display providing a backdrop for the interactive components.

Topical Group on Gravitation
The display will highlight gravitational waves in general, focusing on LIGO and LISA, as well as provide a strong historical component dating back to Einstein's formulation of General Relativity in 1915.

Topical Group on Instrument and Measurement Science
The presentation will reflect the universal importance of measurement in a wide range of topics, incorporating three fundamental themes: the history of instrumentation, its role in enabling discovery, and its beneficial impact on human welfare.

Topical Group on Precision Measurement and Fundamental Constants
The display will feature the new values of the fundamental constants with graphical display material, as well as a demonstration of the on-line WWW database on fundamental constants.

Topical Group on Statistical and Nonlinear Physics
The exhibit will feature a poster of photographs of the many great physicists in the field of statistical and nonlinear physicists, along with photographs illustrating nonlinear phenomena.

Forum on Education
The exhibit will focus on three areas: how physics demonstrations and laboratory equipment have been used to teach introductory physics; a display of introductory textbooks over the last century; and a display of computer-assisted learning.

Forum on Industrial and Applied Physics
This exhibit will focus on the use of physics in industry.

Forum on Physics and Society
The display will feature a retrospective of the unit's activities over the last 25 years, highlighting its role in fostering debates, publishing, short courses, and awards on public policy topics with considerable physics content.

Forum on History of Physics
The display will present a series of Einstein posters originally produced in 1979 for the 100th anniversary of Einstein's birth, in conjunction with the exhibit from the Forum on Education.

Committee on the International Freedom of Science (CIFS)
The exhibit will present an illustrated history of CIFS activities in the past, as well as inform the public of current cases, including an Internet connection with links to relevant human rights sites.

Committee on the Status of Women in Physics
The exhibit will feature a display of "Women Doing Physics", complemented by access to the UCLA Web site, "Contributions of Women to 20th Century Physics."

Committee on Minorities
The display will focus on Bouchet Award winners as well as a pamphlet listing all minority fellows of the APS.

Four Corners Section
The exhibit will be a joint effort with institutions in the region, including New Mexico State University, Los Alamos National Laboratory, and the National Renewable Energy Laboratory.

Ohio Section
The exhibit will focus on early physics in the state of Ohio, emphasizing physics teaching apparatus and featuring a small-scale model of the Michelson interferometer.

Southeastern Section
The exhibit is entitled "Large Physics Facilities in the Southeast," and will present a 28-foot poster highlighting several major institutions of the region.



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Editor: Barrett H. Ripin