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Although almost all physics students have heard of quantum physics, the topics covered in the lecture such as "Bose-Einstein Condensation", "Cold Atoms", "Quantized Vortices" or "Superfluidity" all seemed very new to us. Actually at first I felt a bit left out as I realised 10 of us from Hwa Chong were the only students present at the lecture, while the rest were all prominent university lecturers and researchers from NUS. The conten of the lecture was also at a higer level than what I expected. The 1-hour duration of the lecture was surely not enough for us, as students, to understand thoroughly those topics, which would probably take a student months, or even years to do so. Yet afterall, I think that it is not so important whether we were able to understand the content or not. It is more important that the lecture had raised our interest in the new areas of physics that we do not have a chance to learn in school. Once the interest and the passion are there, I believe the learning process is far longer than just one hour. Just key in the words "Bose-Einstein Condensation" and you can easily get more than 20 millions related websites and journals. See how long the learning journey can be :)
So, what I want to say is that, do not hesitate to attend a lecture (on physics or any other subjects) even if you might find its content far beyond your understanding. As long as you've got the interest, go for it!!! :D
Dang Thuy Linh :)

“If I had seen further, it is by standing on the shoulders of giants.” … In 1924, the Indian physicist Bose derived Max Planck’s radiation formula from a new idea about the ‘statistics’ of light quanta. Einstein applied their ideas and developed his own findings. Superfluidity was first discovered experimentally in liquid helium in 1938 by Pyotr Kapitsa Shortly afterwards, Fritz London suggested its relation to BEC, however liquid helium is still a very far from the ideal model considered later by Einstein. In spite of the work done by previous scientists, the full theoretical understanding of BEC still poses highly challenging problems and waiting for us to discover on in future….When talking about interference, the speaker used a very interesting way to illustrate it which is shooting in a soccer game. The area under the wave is like the areas where football can fall into the goal. … The phenomenon of superfluidity was also a spectacular thing that attracted me a lot. It means flow without friction, but there is a weaker definition, namely indifference to slight wiggling of the boundaries. It is conceptually distinct from BEC, but is usually implied by the latter. The velocity of the superfluid is related to the phase of the complex wave function. .., it is a fruitful experience through which I became more passionate towards physics. Hopefully, we can be exposed to more opportunities like this in future.
Zheng Xiaodong

We must realize that science is about discussing ideas with like-minded people, communicating ideas with other people and always prepare to learn from others… Einstein discovered the unusual behaviour of the quantum molecules during his time and it was later proved to be correct 70 years later. .. Great minds can see things decades before advanced instrument are introduced to prove them to correct…We should remain passionate about science and ask more insightful questions. Because the more we know about science, the more we realize that we still have much to learn.

BEC is about quantum statistics of light quanta (or photons). Under “normal conditions”, gas particles will occupy different quantum states. There is a single quantum state at extremely low temperatures which is occupied by a macroscopic number of atoms, which are bosons (a certain state of atoms)...Towards the end of the first part of the lecture, Professor summarized the movements into a simple series of diagrams:

The temperature of particles can be lowered by 2 ways: laser removal of particles and evaporation of high KE particles. The latter increases d (distance between particles) as temperature is decreased. The lecturer has said that the temperature has to be lowered to the minimum before the particles get too diluted, i.e. when d is too big a distance. Thus the cooling process has to be very carefully done...In the second part of the lecture Professor Yngvason talked about vortices, defined as regions with non-zero vorticity (about the circulation of particles). Examples of vortices include everyday phenomena like “spiraling” of water around the base of the basin as water is drained, to hurricanes and even galaxies light years across. ...I thought of Eddy currents within a conductor as current flows through. The lecturer later said that the vortices do have a lot of similarities with the quantum theory studying electrons in strong magnetic fields. He related it to magnetic fields around currents. I don’t know if it relates to Eddy currents too? ... has actually aroused my interest and ignited my passion to study more about physics.
Bo Jun

One thing I learned about the lecture is that one must see the possibilities in everyday life in order to make great discoveries.Einstein's discovery is based on Indian Physist S.N.Bose's paper. Bose got rejected by publishers before he sent the paper to Einstein who examined the paper to details and developed it into Bose-Einstein Condensation theory.He displayed respect for fellow scientists by paying great attention to their works and put in efforts to study and develop further in this matter.
Bose-Einstein Condensation is based on Max Plank's radiation formula.Such state occurs when a single quantum state becomes occupied by a macroscopic number of atoms.A temperature of 10^(-8) is required.The particles will slow down and move closer in to the state of the lowest level of energy.Superfluidity is very closely related to this phenomenon.The first important discovery on superfluidity is liquid helium It is not an ideal model.In 1995, it is demonstrated with dilute alkali gas.Many elements, including sodium,has been made for displaying the Bose Enstein Condensation.
external image 350px-Bose_Einstein_condensate.pngSuperfluidity has zero vorticity among particles and display many intersting and unique characteristics,like the one in the picture where the white part reprents large number of particles with the same speed and have a small totally volume.
Tuo Tuo

This public lecture has introduced me to an area of physics which I have been oblivious to. Even though I have heard of some of the terms discussed such as Bose-Einstein Condensation (BEC) and superfluidity before attending the lecture, I had little idea of them. Through the lecture, I have gained a better understanding of them. The duration for the lecture maybe too short for me to comprehend the concepts and ideas involved. Nonetheless, the lecture has aroused my interest in physics and has also driven me to find out more about it and to learn beyond curriculum. During the lecture, I find the phenomenon of superfluidity particularly interesting. Superfluidity refers to the frictionless flow at temperatures very close to absolute zero (around 10^-8K). It was first discovered in liquid helium by experiment. At extreme low temperatures, some helium will become superfluid and be in their ground state. Superfluid helium has unusual properties, which include the existence of quantized vortices. Superfluidity also has close connection with BEC.
Ying Shi