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The UVES Large Program for Testing Fundamental Physics

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I will review the current status of experimental and observational searches for varying fundamental constants, focusing on the current controversy surrounding astrophysical measurements involving quasar absorption systems, where unconfirmed claims of variations exist both for the fine-structure constant and the proton-to-electron mass ratio. I will highlight recent work which aims to resolve the controversy by providing a ‘gold standard’ for this type of analysis, and discuss future plans in this area, particularly from ESO . Finally I will comment on the impact of these measurements on cosmology, specifically as probes of the nature of dark energy.

This talk is part of the Cosmology Lunch series.

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