2022 Virtual Medal Talks

Join us for the 2022 Virtual Medal Talks!

The CAP is pleased to present the 2022 Virtual Medal Talks. All talks will take place live via Zoom, and a recording will be uploaded to the CAP Youtube shortly thereafter. Live participants will have the chance to participate in a Q&A session via the Zoom chat with each medalist directly after their talk.

January 27th (All times in Eastern Time)

Join the Zoom here

CAP-CRM Prize in Theoretical and Mathematical Physics

David London | Université de Montréal


The Search for New Physics

While the standard model (SM) of particle physics is certainly correct, it is also clearly incomplete. It has a large number of arbitrary parameters, leaves many questions unanswered, and cannot explain observations such as neutrino masses and dark matter. There must be physics beyond the SM. In this talk, I present a brief survey of my contributions to the search for this new physics.

CAP-TRIUMF Vogt Medal in Subatomic Physics

Asimina Arvanitaki | Perimeter Institute


The Cosmic Neutrino Background on the surface of the Earth

The Cosmic Neutrino Background is a relic of the Big Bang from the time the universe was just a fraction of a second old. I will argue that the reflection of these relic neutrinos on the surface of the Earth results in a significant local neutrino-antineutrino asymmetry that exceeds the expected primordial lepton asymmetry by up to 5 orders of magnitude. This is due to the repulsion of neutrinos from ordinary matter, and the resulting evanescent neutrino wave creates a local gradient in the density of roughly 3 meters. This effect may point to new directions for the detection of the Cosmic Neutrino Background.

CAP Medal for Lifetime Achievement in Physics

Charles Gale | McGill University


Exploring excited nuclear matter and characterizing the quark-gluon plasma

Experiments involving the high-energy collision of nuclei have revealed the existence of an exotic phase of strongly interacting matter: the quark-gluon plasma. Those studies have entered a characterization phase that probes the underlying theory – Quantum ChromoDynamics (QCD) – in regions far out of equilibrium. We discuss the probes and the theory that enable us to learn about the behaviour of the quark-gluon plasma, its theoretical modeling, and what we can learn about QCD under extreme conditions of temperature and energy density. The probes include QCD jets, real and virtual photons, and final state hadrons. We show how recent progress in the field is achieved through a large data-driven program using  Bayesian techniques.

January 30th (All times in Eastern Time)

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CAP-INO Medal for Outstanding Achievement in Applied Photonics

Hoi-Kwong Lo | University of Toronto


Cyber-security in a Quantum World

Quantum computing threatens the foundation of the security of standard public key cryptography including the RSA algorithm. Fortunately, quantum cryptography can save the day by offering information-theoretic security—the Holy Grail of communication security—based on the laws of quantum mechanics. More specifically, in quantum key distribution (QKD), the quantum no-cloning theorem prevents an eavesdropper from stealing the key in a key distribution process. In the last few decades, applied photonics has enabled QKD to advance from a somewhat implausible theoretical curiosity into a demonstrably secure and readily deployable communications technology. In this talk, I review some of the crucial advances in QKD including the decoy-state protocol, quantum hacking, and measurement-device-independent QKD. Besides, I will also mention briefly the concepts of all photonics quantum repeaters and distributed symmetric key exchange (DSKE) that my co-founded quantum start-up, QBT, is currently commercializing.

CAP Herzberg Medal

Daryl Haggard | McGill University


An Exciting New Era of Gravitational Wave and Multi-messenger Astrophysics

How do black holes and neutron stars interact? What happens when they collide? New discoveries from gravitational wave and electromagnetic observatories are revolutionizing this field and starting to answer these fundamental questions. In this talk I will describe how my McGill team and I search for electromagnetic counterparts to gravitational wave emitters and deploy innovative software to rapidly classify alerts and perform spectral analysis on newly discovered kilonovae. I will also discuss our efforts to grow the Canadian multi-messenger community and cement our role as an international leader in this exciting new field.

CAP/DCMMP Brockhouse Medal

Federico Rosei | INRS-EMT

Multifunctional materials for emerging technologies

This presentation focuses on structure-property/relationships in advanced materials, emphasizing multifunctional systems that exhibit multiple functionalities. Such systems are then used as building blocks for the fabrication of various emerging technologies. In particular, nanostructured materials synthesized via the bottom–up approach present an opportunity for future generation low-cost manufacturing of devices. We focus in particular on recent developments in solar technologies that aim to address the energy challenge, including third-generation photovoltaics, solar hydrogen production, luminescent solar concentrators and other optoelectronic devices.

CAP Medal for Excellence in Teaching Undergraduate Physics

James Charbonneau | University of British Columbia


The Value of Seeing Other People Teach and Having People Watch You Teach

A common adage, borrowed from teaching surgery, is “See One, Do One, Teach One”. When I reflect on my own development as a teacher, I can see that it follows this same pattern. But in our own development as teachers we rarely get to see other people teach. As students we watched people teach, but that was to learn the material rather than to learn to teach. Even when we talk about teaching, we often talk about the science of teaching and learning rather than the act of teaching and facilitating a class room.

The act of teaching is a complicated task. There is incredible value in watching people teach, having people watch you teach, and then talking about it afterwards. Paired teaching (Stang 2017) is a collaborative model where two instructors are assigned to the same class with the intent of learning new teaching skills and pedagogical techniques while honing the ones that exist. Both instructors are responsible for all aspects of teaching, attend all classes, and both are given full credit for teaching.

I will talk about my own extensive experience with paired teaching and how it has been fundamental to my own development as a teacher.