1. Peggy Hellweg: Tectonic Timebombs - Earthquakes Near and Far

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    Peggy Hellweg presents a public talk at UC Berkeley on October 15th, 2011, as part of the Science@Cal Lecture Series described at http://scienceatcal.berkeley.edu/lectures "Earthquakes have been prominent in the news during the past year or so, with the deadly and damaging earthquakes from Haiti, Chile, New Zealand and, most recently Japan. I'll talk (and answer questions) about these quakes, as well as about the earthquake hazard from the faults in our back yard." The speaker, Dr. Peggy Hellweg, is a "child of Cal". Her father was a UCB professor of physics for many years. After Sputnik, he slowly transitioned to K-12 science eduction, based on "experimentation" with how his own children learned to understand. Our speaker went on to study physics, herself, at the University of California San Diego, where she completed her BA after spending her junior year abroad in Germany. She then returned to Germany and earned a masters in physics at Goettingen. Finished with college for the time being, she turned to seismology and worked at the seismological laboratory of Germany's Federal Institute of Earth Sciences and Resources. In the mid-nineteen-eighties, she returned to the United States, where she worked in earthquake monitoring at the United States Geological Survey. She earned her doctorate in 2000 at the University of Stuttgart, Germany, on seismicity associated with volcanoes. Since 2001 our speaker is at the Berkeley Seismological Laboratory, where she is now operations manager. The Berkeley Seismological Laboratory operates a network of high quality seismometer stations which record earthquakes from throughout the world. Videography and editing by Chris Klein, Andrew Siemion and James Anderson. This video is released under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License - http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0/us

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    • Lucianne Walkowicz: Magnetic Stars, Space Weather and Life: Stellar Activity and its Effect on Planets

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      Lucianne Walkowicz presents a public talk at UC Berkeley on June 19, 2010, as part of the Science@Cal Lecture Series described at http://scienceatcal.berkeley.edu/lectures Sunspots are some of the oldest astronomical phenomena observed by human beings. These "freckles" on the the face of our Sun may look innocuous, but they are actually the footprints of huge magnetic loops that protrude from our star. These loops sometimes twist and snap, causing spectacular solar flares that send radiation and energetic particles hurtling towards Earth. These flares are responsible for beautiful aurorae, but they can also cause the troubling disruption of satellites and other infrastructure. Similar phenomena are observed on many other stars in our Galaxy, with some stellar flares being even more powerful than those of the Sun. What is it like to be a planet around those stars? How do flares and starspots affect a planet's ability to support and sustain life? These are just some of the questions we will explore. Dr. Walkowicz is a Kepler Postdoctoral Fellow in the Astronomy Department at the UC Berkeley. She studies magnetic activity in the atmospheres of cool stars through both observation and theory. She is active in the development of the next generation of ground-based telescopes as Chair of the Transient Working Group for the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope, and is a member of the team working to find earth-sized planets using the new Kepler space telescope. Dr. Walkowicz grew up in New York City, before obtaining her undergraduate degree at Johns Hopkins, and a PhD from the University of Washington. In her spare time, she enjoys drawing and writing comics, and painting. Videography and editing by Chris Klein. This video is released under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License - http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0/us

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      • Rich Muller: The Current Status of Climate Change - A Non-Partisan Analysis

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        Rich Muller presents a public talk at UC Berkeley on March 19th, 2011, as part of the Science@Cal Lecture Series described at http://scienceatcal.berkeley.edu/lectures Because of its huge economic and political implications, Climate Change is rarely presented without spin. This will be an attempt to do that. I'll discuss the physics of the greenhouse effect, and the data that indicate global warming. Among key topics are: Copenhagen -- why did we fail to get a major treaty? Climategate -- what really happened? IPCC standards -- and why they are undergoing major revisions. What are the top prospects among the many choices for alternative energy? What kind of example can the U.S. set that could be followed by the rest of the world? I'll also report on new results of our "Berkeley Earth" project -- a detailed re-analysis of the evidence for global warming; see www.BerkeleyEarth.org. Rich Muller is a Professor in the Department of Physics at UC Berkeley, and Faculty Senior Scientist at the Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory. He was named a MacArthur Foundation "Genius" Fellow in 1982. He also received the Alan T. Waterman Award from the National Science Foundation "for highly original and innovative research which has led to important discoveries and inventions in diverse areas of physics, including astrophysics, radioisotope dating, and optics." In 1999, he received a distinguished teaching award from UC Berkeley. He teaches the popular "Physics for Future Presidents" series of undergraduate lectures at Berkeley and is the author of an associated book, among other books, essays, and articles. He's also working on a system to view 3-D TV without glasses. Videography and editing by Chris Klein and James Anderson. This video is released under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License - http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0/us

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        • Richard Saykally: What Makes Water Wet? The Latest Word on the Most Important Molecule in the Universe

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          Richard Saykally presents a public talk at UC Berkeley on May 15, 2010, as part of the Science@Cal Lecture Series described at http://scienceatcal.berkeley.edu/lectures Water is the third most abundant molecule in the Universe, and the basis for life as we know it. Despite this profound importance, apparent chemical simplicity, and decades of intense study, the nature of water remains incompletely understood. Current debates include the proposed existence of 17 forms of ice and two forms of the liquid, and the nature of water in confined environments, like cells and carbon nanotubes. We have accumulated a wealth of new data characterizing the nature of water via the study of water clusters in the range of dimer through hexamer, using Terahertz Laser Vibration-Rotation-Tunneling spectroscopy, which directly probes the bends and stretches of the hydrogen bonds. These data provide a good start towards “a universal first principles” model for water, that can explain all of its unusual properties. Born in Rhinelander, Wisconsin and educated at UW-Eau Claire and UW-Madison, Saykally has been a professor at the University of California, Berkeley since 1979. Techniques developed by him and his students have permitted the first detailed study of important textbook molecules, including the hydronium (H3O+), hydroxide (OH-) and ammonium (NH4+) ions, as well as small water clusters and carbon clusters. Recent work includes the spectroscopic determination of a universal water force field via the study of water clusters. A co-author of over 360 publications, the recipient of over 60 honors and awards, Saykally is a member of the National Academy of Sciences and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and has recently received the E.O. Lawrence Award in Chemistry from the U.S. Department of Energy, the Hinshelwood Lectureship from Oxford University, and Inaugural International Solvay Chair in Chemistry from the Solvay Institutes of Belgium, and the 2009 Peter DeBye Award in Physical Chemistry from the ACS. He is a UC Berkeley Distinguished Teacher, and has been active at the national level in science education. Over 50 students have completed the Ph.D. under his direction. Saykally currently holds The Class of 1932 Chair in the Department of Chemistry. Videography and editing by Chris Klein. This video is released under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License - http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0/us

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          • Ryan Canolty: The Brain’s got Rhythm: The Role of Neuronal Oscillations in Regulating Large-Scale Brain Networks

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            Ryan Canolty presents a public talk at UC Berkeley on November 20, 2010, as part of the Science@Cal Lecture Series described at http://scienceatcal.berkeley.edu/lectures What role do neuronal oscillations play in shaping computation and communication in multi-scale brain networks? Somehow, billions of individual nerve cells coordinate their activity so precisely that it results in a single unified event, such as a toddler taking her first steps, an athlete scoring the perfect goal, or a poet find just the right word to express the inexpressible. While complex, the neuronal activity required for perception, cognition, and action occurs efficiently and effortlessly. How does this happen? Accumulating evidence suggests that information is dynamically integrated across multiple spatial and temporal scales within the brain, and that a hierarchy of interacting oscillations may help regulate this multi-scale integration. Like the manual transmission of a car, brain rhythms seem to form an interlocking system ideal for connecting fast events to the slow and the very small to the very large. In this talk, I focus on the relationship linking the activity of single nerve cells to the brain rhythms generated by larger populations. Next, I give a sketch of how this relationship may prove critical for top-down control of functionally related but anatomically-dispersed groups of neurons scattered across the brain. Finally, I conclude with a glimpse of how coordinated global patterns of oscillatory coupling may lead to new clinical applications such as brain-machine interfaces. Ryan T. Canolty is a postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Sciences and the Helen Wills Neuroscience Institute at the University of California, Berkeley. His primary research interests center on the role of neuronal oscillations in local computation and long-range communication in multi-scale brain networks. How does a local population of interconnected neurons coordinate their spiking activity when engaged in a particular functional operation? How do widely-distributed brain regions rapidly form the transient functional networks needed to support complex perception, cognition, and action? As part of his graduate research, Ryan used subdural electrocorticogram (ECoG) signals recorded directly from the brains of neurosurgical patients to investigate the spatiotemporal dynamics of the large-scale networks underlying attention, memory, and language. Before graduate school, he served as an officer at the U.S. Naval Nuclear Power Training Command teaching nuclear physics and thermodynamics. Before that, he graduated from the University of Georgia with a B.S. in Mathematics and Cognitive Neuroscience. If you go all the way back, you’ll find that he was born in the back seat of a car on the way to the hospital. He now prefers to sit in front. Videography and editing by Chris Klein. This video is released under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License - http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0/us

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            • Alex Filippenko: Hearts of Darkness: Black Holes in Space

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              Alex Filippenko presents a public talk at UC Berkeley on February 19th, 2011, as part of the Science@Cal Lecture Series described at http://scienceatcal.berkeley.edu/lectures Black holes are regions of space where gravity is so strong that nothing, not even light, can escape! No longer confined to the imaginations of science-fiction writers and theoretical physicists, black holes have recently been discovered in large numbers by observational astronomers. Learn about the remarkable properties of these bizarre objects from one of the finest explainers in the field of astronomy. Alex Filippenko is one of the world's most highly cited astronomers, and the recipient of numerous prizes for his research. He was a member of both teams that discovered the accelerating expansion of the Universe; this was named the "Top Science Breakthrough of 1998" by Science magazine, and the teams received the 2007 Gruber Cosmology Prize for their discovery. Prof. Filippenko has won the highest teaching awards at UC Berkeley, where the student body has voted him the "Best Professor" on campus six times, and he was selected as the 2006 Carnegie/CASE National Professor of the Year among doctoral institutions. Videography and editing by Chris Klein. This video is released under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License - http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0/us

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              • Homayoon Kazerooni: Exoskeleton Systems for Medical Applications

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                Homayoon Kazerooni presents a public talk at UC Berkeley on July 16th, 2011, as part of the Science@Cal Lecture Series described at http://scienceatcal.berkeley.edu/lectures Berkeley Robotics and Human Engineering Laboratory at UC Berkeley is the birthplace of the exoskeleton systems being adopted by industry. During the last 20 years, this laboratory has been devoted to uncovering all engineering issues associated with exoskeleton systems. This talk will cover applications of the exoskeletons in various fields including the cases for people with mobility disorder. These smart exoskeletons will replace wheelchairs and enable many individuals who cannot walk due to neurological disorders, muscular disorders or aging to walk again. One of the world's leading experts in Robotics Human Augmentation, Dr. Kazerooni conducts research on robotics, control sciences, exoskeletons, human-machine systems and augmentation, bioengineering, mechatronics design, artificial locomotion, intelligent assist devices, and power and propulsion. Dr. Kazerooni is a Professor in the Mechanical Engineering Department at the University of California, Berkeley and director of the Berkeley Robotics and Human Engineering Laboratory. The laboratory’s mission is to develop fundamental scientific and engineering principles for robotic systems that augment human capability. Dr. Kazerooni is also the founder and Chief Scientist of Berkeley Bionics. Videography and editing by Chris Klein, Andrew Siemion and James Anderson. This video is released under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License - http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0/us

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                • Bruce Buffett: Planetary Magnetic Fields

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                  Bruce Buffett presents a public talk at UC Berkeley on July 17, 2010, as part of the Science@Cal Lecture Series described at http://scienceatcal.berkeley.edu/lectures Many of the planets in the solar system have internally generated magnetic fields. All of these fields are produced by the motion of an electrically conducting fluid in the interior, although the details vary from planet to planet. Historical observations of the magnetic field on Earth show that the field is continually changing on time scales as short as a few years. Earth's magnetic field also exhibits spontaneous polarity reversals, which cause the north and south magnetic poles to flip. The mechanism for reversals is not well understood, but geological records suggest that the onset of reversals is accompanied by a sudden reduction in the field strength. A strong field re-emerges from the interior as the new polarity is established. In this presentation I will discuss the origin of planetary magnetic fields. I will also speculate about the current decline in Earth's field, which has prompted some researchers to suggest that the field is entering the next reversal. Bruce Buffett is a Professor of Geophysics in the Department of Earth & Planetary Science at the University of California, Berkeley. He received his PhD in Geophysics from Harvard University and was a Research Fellow at the University of Cambridge. He moved the University of California in 2008 after holding a faculty appointment at the University of Chicago. Videography and editing by Chris Klein. This video is released under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License - http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0/us

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                  • How Did the Universe Begin — and Does It Matter?

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                    Modern science offers us a startling and highly detailed account of Cosmology—the origin of everything. This same issue—and its significance—have occupied religious thinkers for thousands of years. Their insights are very different from those of science, but can also be beautifully complementary. In this unique Wonder Dialogue, an astrophysicist, a Jewish scholar, and a Buddhist monk bring their own perspectives to these vast, yet highly personal questions. Steven Stahler is an astrophysicist at the University of California, Berkeley. Raised in Maryland, he attended graduate school at Berkeley in physics. He was a professor at MIT before returning to the Bay Area in 1992. His research centers on the problem of star formation, which he has attacked from many different perspectives. He is the author, along with Francesco Palla, of The Formation of Stars (Wiley, 2004), the first comprehensive text in this field. Steve especially enjoys the esthetic aspect of his research, which he tries to convey in his public talks and articles. Not coincidentally, he is also an accomplished artist. Daniel Matt is one of the world’s leading authorities on Kabbalah. He has published over ten books, including God and the Big Bang: Discovering Harmony between Science and Spirituality; The Essential Kabbalah (translated into seven languages); and Zohar: Annotated and Explained. Daniel is currently engaged in an immense project of translating and annotating the Zohar, the masterpiece of Kabbalah. So far, he has completed six volumes of The Zohar: Pritzker Edition (Stanford University Press), covering approximately half of the Zohar. For this work, Daniel has been honored with a National Jewish Book Award and a Koret Jewish Book Award. The Koret award called his translation “a monumental contribution to the history of Jewish thought.” Dr. Matt has been featured in Time Magazine, and has appeared on National Public Radio and the History Channel. For twenty years, he served as professor at the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley, California, and has also taught at Stanford University and the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Daniel lives in Berkeley, California with his wife Hana. Rev. Heng Sure, a native of Toledo, Ohio, became a Buddhist Bhikshu (monk) at the City of Ten Thousand Buddhas, Talmage, California, in 1976, after finishing his M.A. in Oriental Languages at the University of California, Berkeley. He ordained in the Mahayana tradition of Chinese Buddhism with his teacher in religion, the late Chan Master Hsuan Hua. In 1977 Heng Sure commenced a “Three Steps, One Bow” pilgrimage for World Peace, traveling up the California coast from South Pasadena to Ukiah. He and his monk companion covered a distance of eight hundred miles in two years and six months, during which time pilgrimage and for three years following Heng Sure observed a vow of complete silence. Rev. Sure currently serves as Director of the Berkeley Buddhist Monastery and holds a Doctorate in Religion from the Graduate Theological Union, Berkeley, California, where he co-teaches a class on Buddhist-Christian Dialogue. He has represented Buddhism on the Global Council of the United Religions Initiative and has served on the Board of Directors of the Interfaith Center at the Presidio. Rev. Heng Sure is fluent in Mandarin Chinese, French and Japanese. He speaks around the world on topics as diverse as human values in the hi-tech world, eating a harmless, plant-based diet, and translating Buddhist music into the West. An accomplished folk musician and storyteller, Rev. Sure interprets traditional insights for contemporary seekers of the path to liberation.

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                    • Geoff Marcy: Discovery of the First Earth-Size Planets and Prospects for Life in the Universe

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                      Geoff Marcy presents a public talk at UC Berkeley on May 17th, 2011. Science fiction taught us that our Milky Way Galaxy abounds with habitable planets populated by advanced civilizations engaged in interstellar commerce and conflict. Back in our real universe, Earth-like planets and alien life have proved elusive. Has science fiction led us astray? NASA recently launched a new space-borne telescope, Kepler, dedicated to discovering the first Earth-like worlds around other stars. We announced a truly rocky planet and the discovery of over 1200 planets having sizes less than twice that of Earth. These discoveries offer clues about the prevalence of worlds suitable for life. But what properties make a planet livable? How common is life in the universe, especially intelligent life? New telescopic and biological observations are providing the first answers to these questions. Geoff Marcy is a Professor of Astronomy at the University of California at Berkeley. Dr. Marcy's research is focused on the detection of extrasolar planets and brown dwarfs. His team has discovered more than 100 extrasolar planets, allowing study of their masses and orbits. Among the planets discovered are the first multiple-planet system, the first Saturn-mass planet, the first Neptune-mass planet, and the first transiting planet. Ongoing work is designed to study the mass distribution of planets and the eccentricity of their orbits, including the successful search for Earth-like planets with NASA's Kepler satellite. Dr. Marcy is a member of the National Academy of Sciences, received the Carl Sagan Award from the Planetary Society, and was named the Space Scientist of the Year by Discover magazine. Check out more UC Berkeley science lectures on this channel, or see more information about the Science@Cal Lecture Series at http://scienceatcal.berkeley.edu/lectures Videography and editing by Chris Klein. This video is released under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License - http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0/us

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