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Saul Krasner Memorial Science Lecture Series
Dr. Roberto Ramos, Low Temperature Quantum Device Laboratory, Drexel University

"100 Years of Superconductivity: From Zero Resistance to Giant, Artificial Atoms" 

Abstract: Since superconductivity was first discovered by Kamerlingh Onnes in Leiden, The Netherlands in 1911, there have been numerous strides in the field that has advanced our basic knowledge of superconducting materials,and produced many practical applications.

Superconductivity is a quantum mechanical phenomenon that results in electrical currents flowing with zero electrical resistance, in magnetic levitation (Meissner effect), and even giant, artificial atoms that are 10,000 times bigger than the average atom. Practical applications have included superconducting wires, MRI machines, machines for diagnosing brain and heart problems, and even components of a future quantum computer. In this presentation, I will discuss the origins and applications of superconductivity, while reporting recent results of our experiments on a unique, relatively new type of superconductors called Magnesium Diboride, and also work on characterizing superconducting quantum "bits". These work involved undergraduate student researchers.

Biography: Dr. Roberto Ramos obtained his BS/MS Physics degree cum laude from the University of the Philippines, where he specialized in quantum mechanics. He earned his Ph.D. in Physics at the University of Washington where he worked with Oscar Vilches measuring two-dimensional phase transitions in quantum films of helium one atomic layer thick. He did his postdoc in experimental quantum computing with Chris Lobb and Fred Wellstood at the University of Maryland's Center for Superconductivity Research where he co-proposed the concept of the Josephson phase qubit and performed the first measurement of quantum entanglement between coupled phase qubits. At Drexel University, he expanded his experimental work in quantum information to include novel superconductivity in Magnesium Diboride and nanoscale graphene research.