Sept 2015 - Pressing FIRE on the most powerful laser in the world
The September talk for Basingstoke Cafe Sci is being given by Dr Ceri Brenner as she introduces you to the inspiring and illuminating world of extreme and exotic laser plasmas. From magnetised supernovas to medicine, the applications of this research are diverse and fascinating.
Basingstoke Cafe Scientifique talks are free to attend and start at 7.30pm promptly, so please arrive from 7.00pm onwards to find a seat and get drinks etc. The doors at the Tea Bar will be open from 6.00pm to meet and chat with other participants beforehand.
On the border of Oxfordshire and Berkshire amongst the Ridgeway Hills there lies a science campus in which two of the world’s most powerful lasers can be found. Just one single pulse from these lasers can heat matter to millions of degrees in less than a billionth of a second, transforming it momentarily into the extreme 4th state of matter: plasma.
This may sound like the plot of a sci fi movie, but instead is the experimental hub for research that asks:-
Where did galaxies, magnetic fields and plasma jets in the early Universe come from? Can we design a clean solution for electricity generation for the truly long term? Can we design miniature particle accelerators for use in hospitals?
Dr Ceri Brenner is an application development scientist at the Central Laser Facility, Rutherford Appleton Laboratory, developing laser-plasmas for applications in medicine through to manufacturing.
Her first degree was in Physics at the University of Oxford before going on to complete a PhD in laser-plasma interaction physics with the University of Strathclyde in 2012 and she has since been based at the CLF.
Ceri describes herself as “solution focused physicist, driven by a passion for contributing to society through applied physics and new technology”. She also enjoys public speaking and acting as a physics ambassador and is regularly invited to speak on local, national and worldwide BBC radio as well as to give public lectures on super intense lasers and their role in society.