News Centre

15 Sep 2021

Looking forward to Physics in the Next 100 Years CUHK Celebrates Professor CN Yang’s 100th Birthday

15 Sep 2021

Professor Yang Chen Ning, Distinguished Professor-at-Large and Director of the Institute for Theoretical Physics, The Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK), will soon enter his 100th year. CUHK will host a series of academic events, starting from 22 September 2021, to introduce to the public his remarkable academic achievements and contributions.

Professor Yang’s theories have become the foundations of modern physics

Professor Yang, in collaboration with Professor Lee Tsung Dao, made significant contributions to the theory of weak interactions by proposing in 1956 that parity may not be conserved. Just a year later, this discovery earned them the Nobel Prize in Physics, making them the first Chinese Nobel laureates. Earlier, in 1954, together with Robert Mills, he had proposed non-Abelian gauge theories (now also known as Yang–Mills theory). Though not immediately appreciated in the 1950s, Yang–Mills theory now forms the basis for the standard model of particle physics, including the Higgs particle.

CUHK will host a series of events to provide students and the public with a deeper understanding of Professor Yang’s research achievements and contributions to modern science:

Looking forward to Physics in the Next 100 Years”

CUHK, Tsinghua University and The Chinese Physical Society will jointly host an academic conference “Looking Forward to Physics in the Next 100 Years: A Celebratory Conference for CN Yang at One Hundred” on 22 September. Leaders in science and education communities around the world, as well as renowned scientists and scholars will deliver celebratory addresses to Professor Yang at the event.

The following day (23 September), notable scientists will deliver lectures in the academic conference  “Looking forward to Physics in the Next 100 Years” in Beijing to highlight Professor Yang’s remarkable achievements on physics.

These two events are by invitation only.

Exhibition

An exhibition “Professor CN Yang at 100 — Grand master of physics, stalwart friend of CUHK” will be held at the University Gallery, CUHK University Library, and will be open to the public from 22 September 2021 to 28 January 2022. The exhibition will showcase precious collections from Professor Yang and take audiences on a journey through Professor Yang’s life and experience.

The selected items on display include his research papers, manuscripts, publications and graduation certificates as well as many photographs. These document his progress, first as a university student during the difficult years of World War Two, then as a doctoral student in Chicago, onward to a distinguished career, and his return to Tsinghua in later years. His long association with CUHK is especially featured.

At the invitation of CUHK, Professor Yang gave a public lecture in the then newly opened City Hall in 1964. He later graciously accepted a special invitation to be Distinguished Professor-at-Large, and offered precious advice on the development of programmes in physics and more generally science. He co-founded the Institute for Mathematical Sciences at CUHK, and set up the Institute of Theoretical Physics. Selected documents and manuscripts, as well as replicas of the Nobel medal and other medals, will also be shown in the University Gallery.

Admission to the Exhibition is free, but members of the public are requested to register in advance. For details, please visit: http://www.cuhk.edu.hk/ugallery/en/zone-h.html .

Information about the Birthday Celebration events can be found in the overall website “Professor CN YANG at 100 – Giant of Physics and Friend of CUHK Across Two Centuries” : http://www.cnyang100th.cuhk.edu.hk/

Public lectures

The Department of Physics, CUHK will host a public lecture on 25 September. Students from local secondary schools are invited to join. Details are as follows:

Date: 25 September 2021 (Saturday)

Time: 2 – 3 pm

Speaker: Professor Kenneth Young

Venue: L1, Science Center, CUHK

Title: Physics for the last and the next hundred years: a tribute to Professor CN Yang

Language: Cantonese

In addition, CUHK and Tsinghua University will organise a Winter School on “Neutrinos —  Astrophysics, Cosmology, and Particle Physics”, to bring together top scholars in neutrino research to give a comprehensive review on the latest developments in the field. Details of the public lecture will be announced later at the following website: http://lesterluk.000webhostapp.com/index_home.php