I have heard it stated by renowned scientists, for example Stephen Hawking, that the macroscopic world is completely deterministic from a theoretical if not practical perspective, while the quantum realm is probabilistic. My question concerns the interaction of atomic radiation with the macroscopic world. The emission of a particle from a particular nucleus at a particular time is, as I understand it, purely probabilistic. If that particle hits a DNA molecule and causes a mutation resulting in cancer how can that cancer be said to be theoretically deterministic?
Professor Nadya Mason received her bachelor's degree in physics from Harvard University in 1995 and received her doctorate in physics in 2001 from Stanford University, working in the group of Aharon Kapitulnik. Her thesis research was on phase transitions in two-dimensional superconductors.
Prior to joining the physics faculty at Illinois, Professor Mason was a Junior Fellow in the Society of Fellows at Harvard University, where she collaborated with Professors Charles Marcus and Michael Tinkham on projects related to both carbon nanotubes and nanostructured superconductors.
Professor Mason's research at Illinois focuses on how electrons behave in low-dimensional, correlated materials, where enhanced interactions are expected to give novel results. The research is relevant to a variety of technologies, including quantum communication, information storage, and qubit control in quantum computers.
Professor Mason's current research focuses on the electronic behavior of materials such as carbon nanotubes, graphene, topological insulators, nanostructured superconductors, and other novel 1D or 2D systems. Typical measurements are of electronic transport at low temperatures. Typical projects include: (i) Tunneling experiments in carbon nanotubes, to study unusual correlated states such as Luttinger liquids, (ii) Studying emergent transport behavior of hybrid systems, e.g., superconductor-graphene, superconductor-toplogical insulator, graphene-PZT, and (iii) Creating planar arrays of superconducting islands, to control and understand collective phenomena in them.
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