Philosophical Issues in Modeling Nanoscale Systems

09/22/2017 - 4:00pm to 4:50pm
Speaker(s) / Presenter(s): 
Julia Bursten
Abstract: The philosophy of science studies how individual scientific concepts, models, theories, and experiments all influence the development of scientific knowledge. My research in the philosophy of nanoscience applies methods from philosophy of science to understanding how problems raised by nanoscience have changed our understanding of concepts, theories, and models from physics, materials science, and inorganic chemistry. For instance, studying the synthesis, simulation, and characterization of mixed-metal nanoclusters raises questions about whether these objects count as alloys. In this talk, I examine some keys questions from philosophy of science for chemistry and nanoscience and highlight some results from my approach to answering these questions. Bio: Julia Bursten is a second-year assistant professor of philosophy at the University of Kentucky specializing in philosophy of the physical sciences. Her research studies how theories and models work in nanoscience, chemistry, and materials science, and why theories in these sciences often work differently than theories in areas like quantum physics and biology.
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