The 2022 Chhabra-Landau Lecture

April 15, 2022

Columbia University Professor Andrew Millis presents his talk titled "Meeting Dirac’s Challenge: Quantum Many-body Physics in the 21st Century" In-person and Online.

The 2022 Chhabra-Landau Lecture takes place on April 7 at 3:55-4:55 PM in the Physics Auditorium (Rm. 202) and virtually on Zoom. Our guest speaker is Professor Andrew Millis from the Physics Department at Columbia University. He provided the following introduction for his talk titled "Meeting Dirac’s Challenge: Quantum Many-body Physics in the 21st Century":

In 1929 Paul Adrian Maurice Dirac wrote, with complete theoretical justification, “The underlying physical laws necessary for the mathematical theory of a large part of physics and the whole of chemistry are thus completely known” and he continued , “... the difficulty is only that the exact application of these laws leads to equations much too complicated to be soluble. It therefore becomes desirable that approximate practical methods of applying quantum mechanics should be developed, which can lead to an explanation of the main features of complex atomic systems without too much computation.’’ This talk will present recent spectacular progress towards meeting Dirac’s challenge. The key insight, important on multiple levels, is that the quantum many-body problem is in essence a big data problem, with the solutions all revolving around appropriate compression of information. Crucial to the practical solution is a multimessenger approach demanding consistency between different methods. Specific examples and important open questions and challenges will be discussed.

About the Speaker, Professor Andrew J. Millis:

Professor Andrew Millis

Prof. Andrew J. Millis is the Co-director of the Center for Computational Quantum Physics at the Flatiron Institute and Professor of Physics at Columbia University. He received his Ph.D. in physics from the MIT, he worked for 10 years in the theoretical physics research department at Bell Labs and then served on the faculty at Johns Hopkins University and Rutgers University before moving to Columbia. He served as chair of the Columbia Physics and then as associate director at the Simon Foundation in the Math and Physical Sciences division before moving to the Flatiron Institute.

Prof. Millis’ research interests focus on the physics of electrons in materials, with a particular focus on collective properties such as superconductivity and magnetism. His recent work has emphasized the development and use of new numerical methods for the many-electron problem and the application of these methods to elucidate the behavior of high-temperature superconductors and materials under non-equilibrium conditions.

He is the author of more than 400 papers, is a member of the National Academy of Sciences, and is a Fellow of the American Physical Society and of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. He received the 2017 Hamburg Prize for Theoretical Physics.

About The Chhabra-Landau Lecture Series:

The Chhabra-Landau Lecture Series celebrates Professor David P. Landau’s pioneering work in applying Monte Carlo computer simulations. This work deepens our understanding of phase transitions and, more generally, condensed matter physics.

The Series also celebrates the role Professor Landau played in founding the Center for Simulational Physicsat UGA, and building a diverse and welcoming community of students at the Center. The Series focuses on the deep connection between physics and computer science, particularly the use of computing or information theoretic ideas, as fundamental tools for physicists to develop novel insights about our world.

The Chhabra-Landau Lecture Series has been endowed by Dr. Ashvin B. Chhabra (MS Physics, UGA 1984; PhD Applied Physics, Yale 1989) in honor of his thesis advisor, Professor Landau, and acknowledges the hospitality and friendship the faculty and students of UGA accorded Dr. Chhabra when he first came to Athens from overseas as a graduate student.

The Chhabra-Landau Lecture Series is an annual event.

Dr. Ashvin B. Chhabra
Dr. Chhabra honoring Dr. Landau at the Inaugural Chhabra-Landau Lecture in 2019.

Professor David P. Landau:

Prof. David P. Landau
Prof. David P. Landau

Prof. David P. Landau is Distinguished Research Professor of Physics and Director of the Center for Simulational Physics at the University of Georgia. Prof. Landau received the Aneesur Rahman Prize for Computational Physics from the American Physical Society (APS).

In 1987, Prof. Landau created a workshop series in Simulational Physics, and helped initiate similar series in Brazil and China. For his external activities, he received the APS Nicholson Medal for Human Outreach. He was Chair of the Division of Computational Physics (DCOMP) of the APS and Chair of the IUP AP International Conference on Computational Physics CCP1999.

Prof. Landau has been named a Fellow of the APS; the Senior Guangbiao Distinguished Professor at Zhejiang University, China; Adjunct Professor at Aalto University in Finland; and MAINZ Visiting Professor in Germany. He is a (Foreign) Member of the Brazilian Academy of Sciences and received a Doctor Honoris Causa from Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais in Brazil. He was Chair of the IUPAP C20 Commission on Computational Physics and is currently Chair of the U.S. Liaison Committee from the National Academy to IUPAP.

Professor Landau received his Ph.D. in Physics from Yale University in 1967.

Dr. Ashvin Chhabra:

Dr. Ashvin Chhabra

Dr. Ashvin B. Chhabra is President of Euclidean Capital, which is responsible for the management of investments for James H. Simons & Marilyn Simons and their associated foundations. Dedicated to advancing research in basic science and mathematics, the Simons Foundation is currently one of America’s two or three largest private funders of these areas. Dr. Chhabra was Chief Investment Officer and Head of investment management and guidance at Merrill Lynch Wealth Management from 2013-2015. He was the Chief Investment Officer at the Institute for Advanced Study from 2007-2013 and Managing Director and head of wealth management strategies and analytics for Merrill Lynch’s Global Private Client Group from 2001-2007. Prior to that, he was head of quantitative research at J.P. Morgan Private Bank. He is also the author of The Aspirational Investor (Harper Collins, 2015). Dr. Chhabra is widely recognized as one of the founders of goals-based wealth management and for his seminal work “Beyond Markowitz” which proposes a novel Wealth Allocation framework.

Dr. Chhabra received an M.S. in Physics from the University of Georgia, performing very high-quality Monte Carlo simulations of models of kinetic gelation. He holds a PhD in applied physics from Yale University in the field of non-linear dynamics.

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