Physics Symposium: Robbert Dijkgraaf and George van Hal

What can a physicist do for the world? How can physics research help to solve the big problems of our time? From the 12th till the 15th of October these questions will be answered during the 56th symposium of the the study association Vereniging voor Technische Physica (VvTP) of the TU Delft. The theme is 2020 Physion: Visions for Future Physics and Technology. Read below for more info on the speakers and register here!

Evening lecture “Becoming Passionate”: Thursday October 15th, 8:00-10:00pm

Robbert Dijkgraaf is probably the most renowned physicist in the Netherlands. As a scientist, Dijkgraaf has made significant contributions to string theory. His research focuses on the interface between mathematics and particle physics. In addition to finding surprising and deep connections between matrix models, topological string theory, and supersymmetric quantum field theory, Dijkgraaf has developed precise formulas for the counting of bound states that explain the entropy of certain black holes. For his contributions to science, Dijkgraaf was awarded the Spinoza Prize, the highest scientific award in the Netherlands, in 2003. He is currently director of the prestigious Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, USA. Dijkgraaf will address topics in his online lecture that might intrigue you as a student: what is important in working in physics? Is a certain vision on physics essential and is this a quality that students can develop? And could today’s students work on great future discoveries?

George van Hal is a Dutch journalist, publicist, and currently science editor for the newspaper Volkskrant. He will share his vision on physics prior to interviewing Dijkgraaf. Van Hal’s entertaining presentation style and knowledge of scientific literature make him a perfect match for our guest of honour, physicist Robbert Dijkgraaf.

Lunch Lectures: Monday the 12th through Thursday the 15th of October

Four lunch lectures will precede the evening lecture. Because of the current Covid-19 restrictions they will also be held online. Register for the lectures, for free, through the symposium website: 

Ir. Willem Kesteloo

Become environmentally responsible

“Changing the way we think about windows.”

Willem Kesteloo was a physics student at the TU Delft and conducted research on SmartWindows. These are coated windows that capture sunlight and by means of luminescence transport it to the window frame. Here solar panels use this light to generate energy. To boost the innovation of this technology, he co-founded his own company PHYSEE. They are currently working on making entire buildings smart and green. His vision is that green energy innovation should be available to the public without any compromise. On Monday Willem Kesteloo will speak about his passion to found his own start-up, about SmartWindows technology, and his vision on a sustainable future.

Dr. Maria Sovago

Find your own vision

“We have a chance to reinvent ourselves.”

Science, technology and theatre is what Dr. Maria Sovago is passionate about. She is a lecturer at the TU Delft. She also coaches scientists, researchers and engineers to be a more authentic leader and to share their knowledge. Her ingredients are power with a good laugh. Using an interactive lecture Maria will help you find your own vision.

As her lecture is interactive, we would like to know how many people will attend it. If you are planning on attending, please make sure you register.

Prof. Ana Achúcarro

Looking for the Answers

“Observing The Big Bang”

Ana Achúcarro is leading the theoretical cosmology group on the early universe at Leiden University. She and her group try to find answers to the biggest unanswered questions in physics. Throughout her journey she has collaborated with Stephen Hawking among others. On Wednesday you will get a glimpse of her research throughout a beautiful story.

Prof. Niek Lopes Cardozo

Nederland, Eindhoven, 28-11-2017; Serie portretten van hoogleraren en onderzoekers, tbv van de websites en database. Fotografie Vincent van den Hoogen
Developing a long term vision

“The energy transition is not finished in 2050.”

Niek Lopes Cardozo is professor of Science and Technology of Nuclear Fusion at Eindhoven University of Technology, the Netherlands. Before focusing on the education and training of the ‘ITER generation’, he directed the Dutch fusion research programme and served on many European scientific and managerial fusion committees, including the Governing Board of Fusion for Energy. He received the Royal Shell prize for sustainable development and energy for his scientific work in nuclear fusion as well as his efforts in outreach.

He is intrigued by the energy transition roadmap needed by 2050 and beyond. To reach the set climate goals in the short term the current technologies will lead this battle. Only after 2050 better and greener innovative technologies will stand a chance. Hopefully this energy transition 2.0 will be realized by 2070; this is prof Niek Lopes Cardozo’s vision.