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2Physics Quote:
"About 200 femtoseconds after you started reading this line, the first step in actually seeing it took place. In the very first step of vision, the retinal chromophores in the rhodopsin proteins in your eyes were photo-excited and then driven through a conical intersection to form a trans isomer [1]. The conical intersection is the crucial part of the machinery that allows such ultrafast energy flow. Conical intersections (CIs) are the crossing points between two or more potential energy surfaces."
-- Adi Natan, Matthew R Ware, Vaibhav S. Prabhudesai, Uri Lev, Barry D. Bruner, Oded Heber, Philip H Bucksbaum
(Read Full Article: "Demonstration of Light Induced Conical Intersections in Diatomic Molecules" )

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Quantum Theory : 5 Needed Breakthroughs
-- Stephen Adler

Stephen Adler with grandchild in 2004 (photo courtesy: Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton)

[Prof. Stephen Adler of the School of Natural Sciences at the Institute of Advanced Study, Princeton is a widely respected authority in the field of Quantum Theory.

During the long career starting with Ph.D work in 1964 from Princeton University, Prof. Adler
continued to make important contribution in the field of Elementary Particles, Quantum Field Theory and Foundation of Quantum Physics.
His recent works can be best described by citing the following classic books that he wrote on his various research projects:

-- ``Adventures in Theoretical Physics: Selected Papers with Commentaries '' (World Scientific Publishing, January, 2006)
-- ``Quantum Theory as an Emergent Phenomenon'' (Cambridge University Press, 2004).
-- ``Quaternionic Quantum Mechanics and Quantum Fields'' (Oxford University Press, 1995).

During his long career, he held many important positions. He was Divisional Associate Editor for Particles and Fields of Physical Review Letters and also the Chairman of the Division of Particles and Fields of American Physical Society. He was a member of the Editorial Board of Physical Review D and Journal of Mathematical Physics. He is a member of the 'National Academy of Sciences' and Fellow of 'American Physical Society', 'American Academy of Arts and Sciences' and 'American Association for the Advancement of Science'.

Prof. Adler received J.J. Sakurai Prize from American Physical Society in 1988. In 1998 he was awarded the Dirac Medal of the Abdus Salam International Centre for Theoretical Physics, Trieste, Italy.

We thought it would be great to hear from Prof. Adler his choice of 5 most important breakthroughs that the Quantum Theory needs.
- 2Physics.com Team]

1. To understand why there are three families of quarks and leptons.

2. To understand the hierarchy problem - why the electroweak scale is so much smaller than the Planck scale.

3. To understand why the cosmological constant is so small.

4. To understand how to get a satisfactory quantum theory of measurement.

5. To reconcile relativistic quantum theory with general relativity.

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