Collective Phenomena in Condensed Matter Physics : Symposium in Honor of Philippe Nozières


Philippe Nozières, who sadly passed away last summer,  was recognized by his peers as a giant in the theory of many-body phenomena in physics. He  spent most of his scientific career in Grenoble, in particular at the ILL, which he joined in 1972. There he led a very active and highly regarded theory group. After his appointment to the chair of statistical physics at  the Collège de France in Paris in 1984, Philippe Nozières kept the  ILL and Grenoble as the base of  his research activities, as head of the ILL Theory Group until his retirement in 2000. He then remained active for more than two decades as a scientific visitor at ILL. During the half-century Philippe Nozières spent at ILL, he  attracted to the ILL some of the world's finest  theoretical physicists, and his deep and insightful ideas have inspired generations of physicists.

Philippe Nozières' outstanding contributions to theoretical physics earned him numerous prestigious awards, among which the Wolf Prize in Physics (1985), and the  Gold Medal of the CNRS (1988). He was elected to the Académie des Sciences (1981) and to the US National Academy of Sciences (1991).

With the Symposium in Honor of Philippe Nozières (19-20 October, 2023), the ILL intends to pay a well-deserved tribute to his outstanding contributions to physics and to the scientific life of the ILL. The symposium will cover some of  the many fields of physics to which Philippe  contributed, featuring  prominent invited speakers with whom he was in close scientific contact.

Click here for a link to Philippe's "carnet noir" with access to two videos on Philippe "Honoris causa - Toronto en 2004" and "Griffin fest - 2011"

  • Thursday, October 19
    • 10:00 AM 10:15 AM
      Welcome address 15m
    • 10:15 AM 11:00 AM
      Discovery of “topological states of quantum matter” in the ILL Collège de Théorie, 1977-81 45m
      Speaker: Prof. Duncan Haldane
    • 11:00 AM 11:30 AM
      Coffee Break 30m
    • 11:30 AM 12:15 PM
      Spacio-temporal patterns of a dynamical phase transformation to the excitonic insulator state. 45m
      Speaker: Prof. Natasha Kirova
    • 12:15 PM 1:00 PM
      Diffusive Phase transformations in alloys, beyond classical nucleation theory” 45m

      Prof. Yves Bréchet

      Speaker: Prof. Yves Bréchet
    • 1:00 PM 2:30 PM
      Lunch 1h 30m
    • 2:30 PM 3:15 PM
      Non-traditional phase transitions in liquid crystals 45m

      Borrowed from textbooks on thermodynamics and statistical physics wisdom gives a classification of phase transitions into two types: continuous or second-order phase transitions, where the latent heat is zero, and the 1-st order phase transitions, where it is not zero. In some more advanced modern textbooks and monographs referred to another standing alone (and in the world of two-dimensional systems) Berezinskii - Kosterlitz - Thouless transitions having some features of the 1-st and 2-nd order transitions. In this work one example from the realm of liquid crystals (smectic A - Hexatic smectic phase transition) of non-traditional thermodynamic behavior is discussed. We propose and theoretically describe mechanisms for such non-conventional behavior, and new predictions following from the consideration.

      Speaker: Dr Efim Kats
    • 3:15 PM 4:00 PM
      A new problem in biophysics: How to reroute a cell signaling pathway 45m
      Speaker: Prof. Bertrand Fourcade
    • 4:00 PM 4:30 PM
      Coffee Break 30m
    • 4:30 PM 5:15 PM
      Supersolidity in ultracold atomic gases 45m
      Speaker: Prof. Sandro Stringari
    • 5:15 PM 6:00 PM
      Discussing physics with Philippe : Polarized 3He, the liquid-solid interface of 4He and the question of the interfacial mass. 45m
      Speaker: Prof. Bernard Castaing
    • 6:00 PM 6:45 PM
      Understanding the BCS to BEC crossover in granular superconductors: a tribute to Philippe Nozieres. 45m
      Speaker: Prof. Guy Deutscher
  • Friday, October 20
    • 9:30 AM 10:15 AM
      Beyond X-Rays absorption experiments 45m

      My first contact with Philippe Nozières dates back to 1964. At the time, I was doing my thesis at the ENS Laboratory in Paris and I went to ask him questions about plasmons in semiconductors. Later on, in 1971, I was beginning to take an interest in synchrotron radiation possibilities and I had some questions on his famous paper, written with C. T. De Dominicis on the absorption of X-rays in metals, which had been verified by experiments on Na at the Hamburg synchrotron (DESY) by the R. Haensel’group. At that time, synchrotron radiation experiments were done on synchrotrons, only allowing absorption measurements. It is only in the beginning of the 1970s, with the appearance of stable beams on collision storage rings and later on with the use of undulators, allowing to gain a factor 104 in brightness, that it was possible to develop completely new techniques like Angle Resolved Photoemission Spectroscopy, Resonant Inelastic Scattering in soft X-Rays, Inelastic Scattering in hard X-Rays with 1 meV resolution, extremely high pressure Diffraction and Spectroscopy. This allowed to do some experiments that, previously, could be done only with neutrons. I will describe some recent results showing the enormous evolution of these possibilities. From 1992, being DG of the ESRF between 1993 and 2OO2, I interacted more with Philippe, especially after 2004, having offices side by side, which allowed me to see him and ask some stupid questions.

      Speaker: Prof. Yves Petroff
    • 10:15 AM 11:00 AM
      Patterns formation in low dimensional electronic crystals 45m
      Speaker: Prof. Serguei Brazovski
    • 11:00 AM 11:30 AM
      Coffee Break 30m
    • 11:30 AM 12:15 PM
      Quantum transport and cold atomic gases 45m
      Speaker: Prof. Thierry Giamarchi
    • 12:15 PM 12:35 PM