Theoretical physicists Lisa Randall and Scott Bolton discuss the challenges of working on abstract issues like cosmology, extra dimensions of space, and the Higgs boson.
Dr. Scott Bolton is the Director of the Space Sciences Department at Southwest Research Institute (SwRI) in San
Antonio, Texas. Dr. Bolton is also the Principal Investigator for the Juno project, a project within NASA’s New Frontiers Program. Prior to being Director at SwRI, Dr. Bolton was a
senior scientist and manager at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) for over 25 years. During his tenure as Director of Space Science at SwRI, Dr. Bolton oversaw the launches of New Horizons and IBEX, the selection of Juno, the confirmation of MMS, and the delivery of hardware for a number of non-NASA programs related to national security. As director of SwRI’s Space Science Department, Dr. Bolton is responsible
for the approximately 150 engineers and scientists working on over a dozen programs including new proposals, instrument development, mission operations and scientific data analysis.
Lisa Randall is an American theoretical physicist and a leading expert on particle physics and cosmology. She works on several of the competing models of string theory. Her best known contribution to the field is the Randall–Sundrum model, first published in 1999 with Raman Sundrum. However, the Large Hadron Collider has failed to provide any evidence to substantiate the validity of this theory. She was the first tenured woman in the Princeton University physics department and the first tenured female theoretical physicist at both MIT and Harvard University. She has also written two popular science books and the libretto of an opera.