C10. Commission on Structure and Dynamics of Condensed Matter

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11th International Conference on Phonon Scattering in Condensed Matter Report

St Petersburg, Russia
July 25–30, 2004

PHONONS 2004 held at 25-30 July 2004 in St.Petersburg, Russia

1. General Information

The conference “Phonons 2004” was held 25-30 July 2004 at A.F.Ioffe Physical-Technical Institute in St. Petersburg, Russia. This was eleventh conference in the triennial series of International Conferences on Phonon Scattering in Condensed Matter , which started in1972 in St. Maxime, France. Previous conferences were also held in Nottingham (1975), Providence (1979), Stuttgart (1983), Urbana (1986), Heidelberg (1989), Ithaca (1992), Sapporo (1995), Lancaster (1998), Dartmouth College (2001). The Conferences in Heidelberg and Sapporo were organized as joint ones with the Conferences on Phonon Physics, belonging to the set, started before in Bloomington (1981) and Budapest (1985). Though since Sapporo meeting the Conferences on Phonon Scattering in Condensed Matter were not formally the combined conferences with Phonon Physics ones, their range of topics became very wide and the existing single Phonon Scattering triennial conference series provides now the major international forum for all experimental and theoretical work on phenomena and problems involving phonons.

Ioffe Institute seems to be a very appropriate location for the present Conference as it was home of Yakov Frenkel and Peter Kapitza who made key contributions to phonon physics in its early days. Another Ioffe Institute member Eugene Gross was the first who in 1930 observed experimentally inelastic scattering of light on acoustic waves in solids. The appearance of well known “Ioffe-Regel criterium” is also due to the studies performed here. The solid state physics, both experimental and applied, remains to be the main field of scientific activity in Ioffe Institute.

2. Conference Statistics

The conference Phonons 2004 brought together 204 scientists from 33 countries. The participants were geographically distributed as follows: Russia 61, France 26, Japan 22, USA 12, Germany 11, United Kingdom 9, Ukraine 9, Italy 5, Finland 5, Poland 5, The Netherlands 3, Belarus 2, Belgium 2, Canada 2, Czechia 2, Estonia 2, Israel 2, Moldova 2, Serbia & Montenegro 2, South Africa 2, Spain 2, Switzerland 2, Turkey 2, Australia 1, Austria 1, Hungary 1, India 1, Ireland 1, Mexico 1, PR China 1, Portugal 1, Slovakia 1 and Taiwan 1. Among participants there were 25 women (1 invited)

3. Scientific Programm

In the scientific programme the traditional topics of the conference series, e.g. phonons in glasses and disordered materials, phonon transport and imaging, Raman and neutron scattering, electron-phonon interaction were all represented as well as new and developing areas: ultrafast acoustics, phonons in nanostructures and phononic crystals. The sessions of Phonons 2004 were held in separate building of the Educational Centre of the Ioffe Institute, which is allotted for Institute-based educational units and various scientific meetings. The programme comprises plenary morning sessions, topical parallel sessions and poster sessions. The special session was organized for presentation of works sponsored by the International Science and Technology Centre. There were five plenary lectures, four invited talks of general interest, nine topical invited talks, 49 oral and 183 poster presentations.

A.F. Ioffe Physico-Technical Institute
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At the opening session the sad news were announced about the death of two distinguished members of international scientific phonon community. After a long illness Prof. Walter Bron, who had made highly significant contributions to phonon physics, passed away. Walter Bron was the organizer of the first International Conference on Phonon Physics in Bloomington, USA (1981). Professor Ija Ipatova tragically died in a car accident. She was a distinguished theoretician in the field of lattice dynamics and was a member of International Advisory Committee of Phonons 2004.

The first plenary lecture given by H. J. Maris was the on subject of acoustic solitons. It was described how a train of strain solitons in a crystal is created by delivering a hard blow to the latticewith a “fast hammer”. In the experiments reviewed, the “hammer” was an ultrafast laser pulse thermalized in a metal film on the crystal surface. This topic was developed in the invited talk by J. I. Dijkhuis, where the interaction of the solitons with the two level system was studied in the ruby crystals. The soliton topic moves to the experiments where the ultrashort acoustic pulses are generated. About ten talks were devoted to this subject, where the studies were carried out in emiconductor nanostrutures (B. Perrin), liquid mercury (O. B. Wright) and other objects. Two sessions were on the subject of coherent phonons. The generation of coherent optical 15.3 THz phonons is experimentally demonstrated in silicon (H. Petek). The generation of coherent acoustic phonons is realized in semiconductors and dielectrics using the continuous and pulsed lasers (D. Lehman, H. W. de Wijn and others). Phonons in different semiconductor nanostructures were the subject of several invited talks at plenary (A. J. Kent, B. H. Bairamov, V. L. Gurevich) and topical sessions. In his plenary lecture A. N. Cleland talked about the progress towards the quantum limit in the performance of nanoelectromechanical systems. A. A. Balandin discussed the theoretical aspects of acoustic phonon confinement in semiconductor nanostrutures and its effect on thermal conductivity and cooling of nanoelectronic devices. N. del Fatti spoke about phonons in nobel-metal nanoparticles and selective excitation of their radial mode. E. A. Zibik presented a recent conribution showing the role of polaron coupling in the processes of exciton relaxation in semiconductor quantum dots. The invited talks at plenary sessions were devoted also to THz excitations in glasses (R. Vacher) and to localized vibrational modes in amorphous silicon (J. P. Wells). In the plenary talk, given by J. H. Page at the final plenary session, the acoustic propagation in two- and three-dimensional periodic composite materials with lattice spacing comparable to acoustic wavelength (“phononic crystals”) were described. Such phenomena as resonant tunnelling, focusing of ultrasound and negative refraction were demonstrated. In total the experimental and theoretical studies presented at Phonons 2004 show that phonon physics is still a vibrant and continually evolving area of scientific research.

4. Conference Prizes and Closing Session

Following the traditions of Phonon Scattering Conferences at the closing plenary sessionspecial tribute was paid to our most active colleagues in phonon studies over many years: Harold de Wijn was presented with the small globe, made from coloured minerals together with the citation “For outstanding contribution to phonons physics – Phonons 2004”. The Wiley-VCH prize for the best presentation at the Conference by young scientist was awarded to Andrey Naumov (Institute of Spectroscopy, Russia) for his oral talk on studies of low-temperature dynamics of disordered solids. At the very end the chorus of Ioffe Institute gave a short concert for conference participants. Finally it was announced that the next 12 th Conference on Phonon Scattering in Condensed Matter wil be held in 2007 in Paris, chaired by Prof. B. Perrin.

5. Cultural Programm

The scientific schedule of Phonons 2004 gave a possibility for the conference participants and accompanying persons to have an interesting cultural program in St. Petersburg, known as a cultural capital of Russia. One excursion was organized for all participants and accompanying persons. This was a 1 and a half hour boat trip on the canals and rivers in St. Petesrburg. The cost of the excursion was included in the registration fee. The welcome party (included in the registration fee) and the conference dinner (cost 50 Euro) were held at 25 and 29 July correspondingly. The individual and small group tours to the museums in St Petersburg and Summer Palaces in the suburbs were held every day and organized by the official agent of the conference organizers Intourist SPB.

6. Publications

The books of abstracts and the conference programme ware delivered to all registered participants at their arrival. The Proceedings of the conference, which includes 150 papers are currently in preparation by Wiley-VCH (Berlin, Germany). The Proceedings will be published in the regular issue of Physica Status Solidi (c). The selected papers will be published in Physica Status Solidi (b). The copies are expected to be distributed among the participants and conference sponsors in December 2004. The on-line version will be available on the web site of Physica Status Solidi.

7. Financial details

The total budget of the conference was about 2,700,000 Roubles (90,000 USD). This includes the funds from the sponsors and conference fees (380 USD – regular fee paid before April 1). The budget was spent on the publishing materials, coffee breaks, renting conference facilities, excursion and meals labour costs. The funds from sponsors were used for covering the registration fees for invited speakers, young participants, for participants from the developing countries, for invited speakers and partly for accommodation and transfer for invited and plenary speakers. All plenary and invited speakers and their accompanying persons were invited for the conference dinner free of charge. The funds from IUPAP was 6000 USD. The amount of 2100 USD was spent for a complete or partial covering the registration fee and transfer for participants from developing countries. This was applied to the participants from Ukraine (9), Belarus (2), Moldova (2), Serbia and Montenegro (2). For supporting 26 students from European, American and Asian countries the amount of 2540 USD was used. The amount of 1360 USD has been paid for 15 copies of the Proceedings, which will be sent to IOUPAP.

8. Acknowledgements

We would like to express our sincere thanks to all who helped to make Phonons 2004, especially to the members of Advisory and Programme Committees. The Organizing Committee acknowledges the financial support from all sponsors. The support provided by IUPAP was extremely helpful for organizing Phonons 2004 and bringing to St. Petersburg the scientists from developing countries and students.

Andrey Akimov
Vice-Chairman of Organizing Committee and Chairman of the Program Committee of Phonons 2004

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