“You know, Mr. Secretary, some people prefer golf.”

In between arguing for climate change legislation and being profiled in Rolling Stone, Secretary of Energy and Nobel Laureate Steven Chu is somehow finding time for his first love: physics. This week’s issue of Physical Review Letters includes a paper on atom interferometry authored by Chu and colleagues at UC Berkeley, Lawrence Berkeley National Lab (where Chu served as director), and Stanford. Atom interferometry uses matter-light interactions to make incredibly precise measurements, with applications in everything from airplane navigation systems to detecting the ripples in space-time predicted by general relativity.

Awesome hobby, Secretary Chu. I only hope the other Secretaries don’t make fun of you for being a geek.

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