2017 Winter Conferences

 *Denotes physicist in charge of diversity

Condensed Matter I
January 2 - 8, 2017

Topological Metamaterials

*Vincenzo Vitelli, Leiden University
Sebastian Huber, ETH Zurich
William Irvine, University of Chicago
Andrea Alu, University of Texas, Austin

Creating artificial materials that manipulate the flow of electrons, photons, sound waves or mechanical energy is a prime focus of modern materials science. In the past few years, a new paradigm has been emerging within this effort thanks to the application of ideas from topology, the mathematics describing properties that are unchanged by smooth deformations.

Following an explosion of activity in the study of topological phases in hard condensed matter, this topological approach has recently made its way from the quantum realm of electrons to the classical world of light, sound, and mechanics. Common to all these developments is the presence of robust edge states, not necessarily linear waves, that owe their existence to integer-valued quantities (topological invariants) characterizing the bulk of the system. This Winter Conference will bring together physicists, materials scientists, and engineers to further developments in this burgeoning field.

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January 8 - 13, 2017

Single Molecule Biophysics

Steven Block *, Stanford University
Thomas Perkins, JILA, University of Colorado

This will be the 9th biennial workshop on Single Molecule Biophysics (SMB) held at the Aspen Center for Physics (ACP), building on a successful series begun in 2001. The SMB meeting highlights recent progress in the field of single molecule biophysics, on both its experimental and theoretical frontiers. Topics vary somewhat from year to year. Biological systems covered in past meetings have included nucleic acid-based enzymes (polymerases, topoisomerases, helicases, etc.), nucleic acids (DNA, RNA), mechanoenzymes (myosin, kinesin, dynein, ATP synthase, flagellar motors), and aspects of molecular physiology (folding/unfolding, binding, signaling, and other biostructural changes). Featured experimental techniques have included fluorescence, optical trapping, magnetic tweezers, scanned-probe microscopy, and super-resolution techniques. This workshop traditionally attracts a mixture of experimentalists and theorists. Biologists and physicists with either newfound or longstanding interests in biophysics are encouraged to apply: all levels of accomplishment are welcome. The meeting features a lively mix of students and professors. The SMB workshop has been oversubscribed in the past, so a higher priority will be assigned to applicants presenting important new findings who commit to remain for the duration of the meeting. In the event of oversubscription, a limit of two representatives from each participating scientific group or collaboration will be adopted. We will attempt to award each group or collaboration one short talk based on the applications submitted. All attendees are also invited to present posters. Prospective participants should submit the following:

- A short abstract (~200 words) of the proposed contribution, including a title and the names and affiliations of all co-authors. Abstracts will be ranked and used as a basis for admission.

- Indicate if you wish the abstract to be considered for a talk: otherwise, a poster presentation will be assumed.

- Indicate that you intend to attend the full meeting, if accepted. If a partial attendance is necessary, please be sure to state the reason in your application.

In past years, funding has been raised to help defray a portion of the expenses for junior participants, or for those traveling a very long way. Fundraising continues and we hope to maintain this tradition. In addition, one junior applicant will receive a merit-based scholarship award from a special endowment fund for the ACP Winter Meetings.

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Condensed Matter Physics II
January 15 - 21, 2017

Quantum Dynamics: From Models to Materials

Anushya Chandran, Perimeter Institute
Roderich Moesner, Max Planck Institute for the Physics of Complex Systems
*Daniel Podolsky, Technion
Ulrich Schneider, Ludwig Maximillian University

Remarkable experimental and theoretical developments in the last few years have led to a deeper understanding of the real-time dynamics of quantum many-body systems. On the theory front, the principles underlying the thermalization (or lack thereof) of quantum systems subject to different kinds of external driving, disorder, interactions and resulting internal ordering are just being discovered. Simultaneously, numerical methods have become more powerful in exploring quantum many-body dynamics. Experimental systems including cold atomic gases, disordered superconductors and ultra-fast spectroscopic probes can now provide a window on the nature of quantum coherent dynamics. This Aspen winter meeting brings together leading practitioners in the respective communities for a coherent push on the non-equilibrium frontier.

A limited amount of financial support will be available, in particular for junior participants or for those traveling a very long way.

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Astro Physics I
February 5 - 11, 2017

The Dawning Era of Gravitational-Wave Astrophysics

Rana Adhikari, Caltech
Patrick Brady, University of Wisconsin, Madison
Alessandra Buonanno, University of Maryland
Laura Cadonati, Georgia Tech
*Daniel Holz, University of Chicago
Mike Landry, LIGO, Caltech
Nergis Mavalvala, LIGO, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

The detection of binary black hole mergers has ushered in the era of gravitational-wave astrophysics. This conference will discuss the GW detector network, scientific output from LIGO's first science run (O1), the progress of the second run (O2; expected to be ongoing during the conference), and expectations for the future of gravitational-wave astronomy. We expect to focus on the following broad topics:

- GW Detectors
- GW data analysis and waveform modeling
- Current GW results
- Astrophysical repercussions of GW measurements, EM follow-up
- The future of gravitational-wave astrophysics

For more information, please click here.

Astro Physics II
February 11 - 17, 2017

Fast Radio Bursts: New Probes of Fundamental Physics and Cosmology

Dunc Lorimer, Jodrell Bank Observatory
Bing Zhang, University of Nevada, Las Vegas
Sarah Burke Spolaor,
*Edo Berger, CFA, Harvard University

This meeting marks the remarkable discovery and the first decade of study of Fast Radio Bursts (FRBs). We do not yet know what causes these enigmatic and extreme transient radio sources, and they pose many challenges for observers and theorists alike. FRBs appear to be at extragalactic distances and show great promise as probes of exotic physical processes at their source, compact objects, and the ionized and magnetized plasma along the line of sight. The meeting aims to allow an essential convergence of data and theory at a time when FRB research is rapidly gaining momentum. The goals of the meeting are to: (i) identify and develop the most promising theories for the origins of FRBs based on the most recent observations; (ii) discuss how they can be used as astrophysical probes and tests of general relativity; (iii) advance progress on FRB discoveries via the exchange of technical expertise; (iv) organize and coordinate new experiments including surveys and multi-wavelength follow-up strategies.

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Particle Physics I
March 5 - 11, 2017

Superconformal Field Theories in Four or More Dimensions

Philip Argyres, University of Cincinnati
Oren Bergman, Technion, Israel Institute of Technology
Neil Lambert, King's College, University of London
Kimyeong Lee, Korea Institute for Advanced Study
*Mario Martone, University of Cincinnati
Leonardo Rastelli, Stony Brook

Ever since the seminal work of Seiberg and Witten, quantum field theories with 8 or more supercharges have been an invaluable resource in the development of new insights and techniques in quantum field theory. These have played a major role in elucidating the strong coupling behavior of 4-dimensional N=2 superconformal theories with marginal couplings, and more recently in the identification and description of isolated non- Lagrangian theories. Furthermore this has led to the remarkable conclusion that there are superconformal quantum field theories in five and six dimensions, all of which are non-Lagrangian and intrinsically non- perturbative. Perhaps the most enigmatic of these is the 6-dimensional (2,0) theory of the M-theory 5-brane. These theories are also intimately connected to 4-dimensional field theories, many of whose properties can be derived from the higher-dimensional geometry.

The partial convergence and large overlap of the most recent results suggest that considerable progress in a systematic understanding of superconformal quantum field theories in various dimensions and with at least 8 supercharges could be achieved by combining insights coming from different techniques. This workshop aims to expedite this progress by bringing together experts from diverse sub-disciplines and providing a forum for exchanging ideas. Topics will include:
_ Analytic geometry of conformal manifolds and moduli spaces
_ BPS wall crossing
_ Brane dynamics in string/M theory
_ Conformal bootstrap
_ F theory and geometric engineering of gauge theories
_ Supersymmetric localization and the computation of partition functions

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Particle Physics II
March 19 - 25, 2017

Particle Physics in 2017: From the LHC to Dark Matter and Beyond

Csaba Csaki, Cornell University
Erez Etzion, CERN
Yuri Gershtein, Rutgers University
Julia Shelton, University of Illinois
*Tomer Volansky, Tel Aviv University

As one of the major 2017 particle physics winter conferences, this conference will cover the latest developments in high energy physics, concentrating on the theoretical and experimental exploration of the Higgs sector, dark matter, and searches for physics beyond the Standard Model. New analyses using the full 2016 LHC Run 2 datasets are expected to be announced and discussed, along with the latest results from dark matter searches. The format of the conference and its mix of talks are designed to encourage interactions between theorists and experimenters, exposing experimenters to novel theoretical ideas, and providing the latest experimental results.

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Astro Physics III
March 26 - April 1, 2017

Formation and Dynamical Evolution of Exoplanets

Katherine Deck, Caltech
Eric Ford, Pennsylvania State University
*Fred Rasio, Northwestern University
Hilke Schlichting, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

This conference aims to bring together celestial mechanics experts and theoretical astrophysicists working on exoplanets. The main topics to be covered include:

- Planet formation theories in the context of recent exoplanet discoveries
- Long-term dynamical evolution and stability of multi-planet systems
- Orbital resonances and chaos
- Strong planet-planet interactions and collisions
- Formation and dynamics of circumbinary planets
- Ultra-short periods and planet-star interactions
- Tidal dissipation in planets and stars
- Highly inclined systems and hierarchical triples
- Short-term interactions and modeling of TTVs

For more information, please click here.