"Physics and the Dark Side"

Location: Martin Wood Lecture Theatre, Department of Physics

Date: Saturday 24 November 2018

Time: 10:30 - 17:00


Across the millennia darkness occurring due to physical phenomena such as solar and lunar eclipses has been a source of fascination and awe, and as astronomical knowledge developed it was discovered that there was a dark side of the Moon never visible to the Earth. With a deepening understanding of the field of cosmology, black holes were first predicted and then experimentally discovered. More recently theories of both dark matter and dark energy have been postulated to explain effects observed in the Universe caused by the presence of such unseen matter and the Universe's expansion. This conference will examine these different strands of the dark side of physics across the ages. 


The programme for the day is below:

MORNING CHAIR: Dr Shawn Bullock (University of Cambridge)

10.30 am WELCOME

10.40 am Dr Francisco Diego (University College London) - Celestial Shadows: Terror, Myth, Science and Beauty [VIDEO] 

11.30 am Professor Manuel Grande (Aberystwyth University) - The Dark Side of the Moon and Is It Really Dead? [VIDEO]

12.20 pm Professor Carole Mundell (University of Bath) - Big Bangs and Black Holes: From Thought Experiment to Technological Revolution [NO VIDEO] Please see a brief history of black holes here.


AFTERNOON CHAIR: Dr Marina Debattista (University of Oxford)

2.15 pm Dr Gianfranco Bertone (University of Amsterdam) - The Quest for Dark Matter [VIDEO]

3.05 pm Professor Timothy Sumner (Imperial College London) - A Universe Dominated by Dark Energy? [VIDEO]


4.30 pm SUMMARY OF THE DAY'S PROCEEDINGS - Professor Joseph Silk (Institut d'astrophysique de Paris) [VIDEO]

There will be a conference dinner at St Cross in the evening following the end of the conference with an after-dinner talk by Asif Khan (architect of the Vantablack Pavilion at the 2018 Winter Olympics) on his design of the darkest building on Earth.