Featured speaker: Paul Halpern is a professor of physics at the University of the Sciences in Philadelphia, and the author of seventeen popular science books. Halpern received a Ph.D in theoretical physics, an M.A. in physics and a B.A. in physics and mathematics.
He was also the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship, Fulbright Scholarship, and an Athenaeum Society Literary Award.
He has written many popular science books and articles, including the books The Cyclical Serpent, Cosmic Wormholes and The Great Beyond. He has also appeared on the 1994 PBS series Futurequest, as well as the National Public Radio show "Radio Times."
Dr. Halpern's talk will be on his new book, ""Flashes of Creation: George Gamow, Fred Hoyle, and the Great Big Bang Debate."
Today, the Big Bang is so entrenched in our understanding of the cosmos that to doubt it would seem crazy. But as Paul Halpern shows in Flashes of Creation, just decades ago its mere mention caused sparks to fly. At the center of the debate were Russian American physicist George Gamow and British astrophysicist Fred Hoyle. Gamow insisted that a fiery explosion explained how the elements of the universe were created. Attacking the idea as half-baked, Hoyle countered that the universe was engaged in a never-ending process of creation. The battle was fierce. In the end, Gamow turned out to be right — mostly — and Hoyle, despite his many achievements, is remembered for giving the theory the silliest possible name: "The Big Bang." Halpern captures the brilliance of both thinkers and reminds us that even those proved wrong have much to teach us about boldness, imagination, and the universe itself.
More about Paul: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paul_Halpern
More about "Flashes of Creation:" https://www.basicbooks.com/titles/paul-halpern/flashes-of-creation/9781541673595/
You can purchase copies of Paul's new book "Flashes of Creation" (including signed stock!) at this local bookstore: https://www.mainpointbooks.com/book/9781541673595
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Recordings of our recent Zoom meetings are available on Youtube. I've created a playlist at
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Finally, a preview of upcoming meetings (meeting modality still to be determined):
October 15: John Conrad, NASA/JPL Solar System Ambassador: "Lucy: The First Mission to the Trojan Asteroids"
November 17: Dr. Natalie Butterfield, Villanova University: "Dense Molecular Gas in the Galactic Bar Dust Lanes"