The APS April meeting returns to the nation's capitol in 2001, featuring a special theme of Physics of the Universe. The meeting will run from April 28 through May 1 in Washington, DC, and will include invited and contributed sessions on a broad range of topics, including nuclear physics, astrophysics, particle physics, gravitation, international affairs, education, history, and science policy.
Chief among the program highlights is the much-anticipated initial report of the National Research Council Committee on the Physics of the Universe (CPU), entitled "Connecting Quarks to the Cosmos: Scientific Challenges for the New Century." CPU chair Michael Turner (University of Chicago) will present the committee's Phase I report at a special session discussing the most timely opportunities in this rapidly developing and very active area of research. The session will begin the process of collecting input from the scientific community for Phase II of the committee's task, which is to evaluate and prioritize projects that address science at the intersection of physics and astronomy. Turner and other CPU members will be on hand to respond to questions and comments from meeting attendees during the open discussion.
In keeping with the more general nature of the April Meeting, there are nine invited plenary lectures planned. National Public Radio's David Kestenbaum will discuss bringing physics to the public, while Fermilab's Maria Spiropulu will report on the search for extra dimensions.
Other plenary lecturers will address such topics as magnetic reconnection, CP violation in B mesons, neutrino oscillations, atom wave amplification, the Chandra project, and the Boomerang experiment.
The downtown Washington locale provides an ideal setting for several sessions related to science policy, including possible appearances by science appointees in the new administration. In addition, the APS is participating in the annual Congressional Visits Day, May 1-2, and conference attendees are encouraged to stay an extra day in Washington to participate. It is a two-day annual event that brings scientists, engineers, researchers, educators, and technology executives to DC to raise visibility and support for science, engineering, and technology.
Finally, a new feature at this year's meeting is the Students Lunch with the Experts, on Monday, April 30. The April Meeting Program Committee identified a broad range of scientific topics and experts on each. The experts will host an informal discussion over a complimentary box lunch with students interested in their topic. Sign-up begins on Saturday, April 28, at 1 PM, near the APS Registration Desk, and will continue on a first-come, first-served basis until all the slots are filled.
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Associate Editor: Jennifer Ouellette