Live webcast to explore the ways “useless” discoveries have changed our lives

In a live webcast on November 8, physicist Pauline Gagnon will explain how seemingly “useless” scientific discoveries, such as the Higgs boson, have changed the way we live our lives.

November 8, 2017 (Waterloo, Ontario, Canada) – How have you benefited from the discovery of the Higgs boson? In more ways than you might guess.

In a live webcast talk, physicist Pauline Gagnon will discuss the many ways that “useless” discoveries – those fundamental physics breakthroughs without immediate practical applications – have changed our lives. In the process, she’ll also examine the many improbable achievements that led to the Higgs boson discovery, from massive collaborations to intricate and expensive experimental technologies.

The talk, titled “Improbable feats and useless discoveries,” is part of the Perimeter Institute Public Lecture Series. The talk will be webcast live on and via partner organizations on Wednesday November 8 at 7PM ET.

Now retired from active research, Gagnon searched for dark matter as a Senior Research Scientist at Indiana University working at CERN. She is now dedicated to inspiring other curious minds of all ages to ponder the kinds of big questions that fascinate her. Gagnon has delivered nearly 100 presentations to audiences in nine countries on three continents, and is the author of a popular science book, Who Cares about Particle Physics? Making Sense of the Higgs Boson, the Large Hadron Collider and CERN.

Following the talk, Gagnon will answer questions from the online and in-house audience – including questions submitted prior to and during the talk via Facebook and Twitter (using the hashtag #piLIVE). Questions are welcomed from everyone – aspiring scientific explorers, school classes, physics buffs, and general math and science enthusiasts.

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Institut Périmètre de Physique Théorique

L'Institut Périmètre est le plus grand centre de recherche en physique théorique au monde. Fondé en 1999, cet institut indépendant vise à favoriser les percées dans la compréhension fondamentale de notre univers, des plus infimes particules au cosmos tout entier. Les recherches effectuées à l’Institut Périmètre reposent sur l'idée que la science fondamentale fait progresser le savoir humain et catalyse l'innovation, et que la physique théorique d'aujourd'hui est la technologie de demain. Situé dans la région de Waterloo, cet établissement sans but lucratif met de l'avant un partenariat public-privé unique en son genre avec entre autres les gouvernements de l'Ontario et du Canada. Il facilite la recherche de pointe, forme la prochaine génération de pionniers de la science et communique le pouvoir de la physique grâce à des programmes primés d'éducation et de vulgarisation.


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