2023-24 Winter Conferences

Proposals for the 2025 Winter Conferences are invited
and must be submitted by January 15, 2024
For more information, please click here.

Click Here to View the Winter Posters

* physicist in charge of diversity
** scientific advisor

Condensed Matter Physics 
December 10-15, 2023

Disorder and Quantum Phases of Matter

Deadline to apply is August 31, 2023


N. Peter Armitage, Johns Hopkins University
Matthew S. Foster, Rice University
Steven Allan Kivelson, Stanford University
*Yi Li, Johns Hopkins University

A principal goal of modern condensed matter physics is control: Control of topological properties, emergent collective phases, decoherence, and entanglement. In seeking these goals, complex aspects of quantum materials physics are often purposefully or inadvertently ignored. Quenched disorder is such an aspect that complicates the interpretation of experiments and the formulation of theory, despite the fact that perfect crystallinity is a never-realized ideal in materials.

In this Aspen Winter Workshop, we seek to shift the focus to disorder itself, as a source or an unavoidable accompanying feature of many remarkable phenomena observed in modern quantum materials. Although randomness has driven a wide range of modern theoretical developments in recent years (such as many-body localization), there has not been a US-based conference in recent memory with a singular focus on disorder effects in quantum materials physics. 

Themes will include, but are not limited to:
  • Disorder, strange metals, and superconductivity

  • The effects of disorder on competing phases and quantum phase transitions

  • Localized strongly interacting states of matter

  • The intertwining of disorder and topology

Questions driving our workshop include:
  • Is disorder a necessary ingredient for strange metallicity in non-Fermi liquids? What role does it play in high-Tc superconductivity?

  • How can disorder be used to control and probe the physics of intertwined orders in strongly correlated materials? 

  • Are quasiparticles well-defined in a strongly localized and interacting Coulomb glass?

  • How protected are topological excitations like Majorana-fermion zero modes in the presence of quantum fluctuations and disorder?

Learn more: https://sites.google.com/view/dirtyqmat-aspen-23/

Soft Matter Physics
January 7-12, 2024

Computing with Physical Systems

Deadline to apply is August 31, 2023

Andrea J. Liu, University of Pennsylvania
*Peter McMahon, Cornell University
Arvind Murugan, University of Chicago
Hakan E. Türeci, Princeton University

There has been an explosion of interest in unconventional approaches to computing with physical systems. This has been driven by multiple factors, including (1) the realization that there is the potential to build vastly more energy-efficient or faster computers if we rethink how we harness physical processes for computing – giving up some of the abstractions computers have relied on for 50+ years in exchange for being able to operate closer to the fundamental limits that physics allows, and (2) the growth of machine learning – which provides both a strong motivator for more efficient machines to be built, as well as a wealth of methods that can be used to reimagine how computers work. This conference will bring together both theorists and experimentalists across a broad range of disciplines – including soft condensed matter, biological physics, neuroscience, machine learning, hard condensed matter, optics, fluid dynamics, and quantum information science – who typically do not have the opportunity to interact but who are all exploring various aspects of computing in different physical systems.

Topics will include:

  • Information processing and dynamics in classical and quantum systems, including (but not limited to) electronic, spintronic, optical, mechanical, fluidic, biological, and chemical systems.

  • Devices, architectures, and algorithms for constructing physical machines that can learn without electronic processors.

  • Fundamental limits to computing: time, energy, precision.

  • Integrated sensing, computation, and actuation.

The conference will feature invited talks and discussion sessions. All participants will be invited to present posters.

Learn more: https://mcmahon.aep.cornell.edu/aspen/2024/

High Energy Physics
January 14-19, 2024

Strings, Fields, and Deep Learning

Deadline to apply is August 31, 2023


Miranda Cheng, Academia Sinica
Michael Douglas, Harvard University
James Halverson, Northeastern University
*Fabian Ruehle, Northeastern University

Progress in deep learning has traditionally involved experimental data, but in recent years it has impacted our understanding of  formal structures arising in theoretical high energy physics and pure mathematics, via both theoretical and applied deep learning. This conference will bring together high energy theorists, mathematicians, and computer scientists across a broad variety of topics at the interface of these fields. Featured topics include the interface of neural network theory with quantum field theory, lattice field theory, conformal field theory, and the renormalization group; theoretical physics for AI, including diffusion models and equivariant models; ML for pure mathematics, including knot theory and special holonomy metrics, and deep learning for applications in string theory and holography.

Learn more: https://indico.cern.ch/event/1299185/

Condensed Matter Physics
February 4-9, 2024

Quantum Materials in the Quantum Information Era: From Theory to Experiment

Deadline to apply is September 15, 2023


James G Analytis, University of California Berkeley
*Joseph Checkelsky, MIT
**Hae-Young Kee, University of Toronto
Yong-Baek Kim, University of Toronto
Rahul Nandkishore, University of Colorado Boulder

There has been a recent surge in interest in the scientific community in quantum information technologies, including quantum computing, quantum sensing, and quantum communication. At the heart of each of these are the quantum materials which will serve as the platform for their operation, akin to the role of semiconductors in conventional computation. Despite this pivotal role, there remains a significant gap between the study of modern quantum materials and the requirements, goals, and current status of quantum information science. This conference will bring together scientists working in a variety of “quantum information relevant” quantum material areas to engage with this challenge. We expect that quantum information may provide a new common thread to tie these subfields together and help shape a vision for the future of the fundamental science of quantum materials.

The conference will combine contributions for theory, experiment, and computation and draw from a broad community united by connections to quantum materials and quantum information. This will include physicists who have made or been guided by the QI-QM connection in various ways- bringing such a community together has the potential to strengthen and unify these connections. At the same time, given the fast moving nature of this subfield, a subsection of the program will be allocated for recent developments germane to the theme of the conference. 

Learn more: https://sites.google.com/view/acp-winter-2024-quantum/home

Quantum Physics
February 25 - March 1, 2024

Noise and Decoherence in Qubits

Deadline to apply is September 15, 2023

Kenneth Brown, Duke University
*Susan Coppersmith, University of New South Wales
Christian Enss, Heidelberg University
Clare Yu, University of California

Quantum computers hold great promise, but a major impediment to their realization is noise and decoherence. This conference will bring together both experimental and theoretical researchers working on various qubit modalities, i.e., superconducting, semiconducting, trapped ion and Rydberg atom qubits, to understand the microscopic sources of noise and decoherence as well as how they can be overcome. Some of these sources of noise and decoherence also interfere with the sensitivity of detectors of, e.g., gravitational waves, dark matter, etc. We will also have special sessions to discuss the current cutting edge of multi-qubit systems as well as recent breakthroughs and advances in various qubit technologies.

Learn more: https://sites.google.com/view/qubitnoise-aspenwinterconf2024/home

March 3-8, 2024

The Physics and Impact of Astrophysical Dust: from Star Formation through Cosmology

Deadline to apply is September 30, 2023

Daniela Calzetti, University of Massachusetts Amherst
Caitlin Casey, University of Texas Austin
*Desika Narayanan, University of Florida
Karin Sandstrom, University of California San Diego

The impact of astrophysical dust on our study of the cosmos is wide-ranging. Roughly half the photons emitted by stars over cosmic time have been absorbed by interstellar dust. Comprised of complex molecules, dust serves as a catalyst for interstellar chemistry, as well as a regulator of the thermodynamics in star-forming regions. The extinction and attenuation properties of dust impact nearly every subfield in astronomy, from the study of star formation through cosmology. As a community, we are poised to make significant steps in our understanding of astrophysical dust in the coming years. The very recently launched JWST is already revolutionizing our understanding of the physics of cosmic dust. The near and mid-infrared spectrographs on Webb are transforming our spatially resolved view of PAHs, while the near infrared cameras are advancing our understanding of extinction and attenuation in this wavelength regime. At the same time, ALMA will continue to provide resolved maps of dust emission from the. most obscured objects in the Universe, while single dish facilities are enabling the discovery of the dustiest starbursts during the Epoch of Reionization. On the theoretical side, the next generation of cosmological simulations are poised to include self-consistent models for the complex interplay between dust evolution, star formation, and stellar/black hole feedback. The time is ripe to convene to discuss state-of-the-art observational and theoretical results, and make headway toward identifying both open problems, as well as areas of consensus.

Learn more: https://astro.ufl.edu/aspendust2024/

High Energy Physics
March 24-29, 2024

The Future of High Energy Physics: A New Generation, A New Vision

Deadline to apply is October 31, 2023

Karri DePetrillo, University of Chicago
*Lawrence Lee Jr, University of Tennessee Knoxville
Nausheen Shah, Wayne State University
Sally Shaw, University of Edinburgh

The Energy and Cosmic frontiers of particle physics aim to address deeply connected questions with innovative and complementary approaches. This ACP conference will focus on the bold long-term visions for both sub-fields, and particularly highlight the role of Early Career researchers in making those visions a reality. In moving forward, it is crucial we break down artificial barriers between the subfields in order to tackle these questions together. An emphasis will be placed on questions related to the Higgs Boson, dark matter, naturalness, and the origin and evolution of the universe, with an eye towards long-term ideas and R&D. This workshop will create an opportunity for both early career and veteran physicists driving these new efforts to share recent progress and form new collaborations.

Learn more: https://indico.cern.ch/event/1305841/

March 31 - April 5, 2024

Diffuse Cosmic Backgrounds and the Low Surface Brightness Universe

Deadline to apply is October 31, 2023

Kenneth M. Lanzetta, SUNY Stony Brook
*Mireia Montes, Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias
*John Webb, Cambridge University
Michael Zemcov, Rochester Institute of Technology

The background radiation at optical and near-infrared wavelengths is thought to be sourced largely by stars in galaxies, but tensions in recent measurements indicate that our census of galaxy populations might be incomplete. A significant missing fraction of the starlight might be sourced by low surface brightness populations that are difficult to observe, and indeed searches for faint and diffuse extragalactic sources have found a wealth of new populations. These faint sources contain important information to understand star formation in low-mass galaxies, the hierarchical assembly of galaxies and galaxy clusters over cosmic history, and the nature of dark matter. Progress in this regime has been slow due to the scarcity of high-quality, wide-area, ultra-deep images needed to produce statistically significant and homogeneous samples, but dramatic improvements in telescope and detector technology will lead to a wealth of exciting scientific discoveries to emerge from the low surface brightness universe.

In this conference, we will bring together experts in the history of galaxy formation, low surface brightness populations, the cosmic background light, and astrophysical theory to discuss how to reconcile the observations and their implications for cosmic structure formation. 

Learn more: https://sites.google.com/view/aspen-2024-diffuse-universe/