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Order on Curved Surfaces: Scars in Sphereland – Mark Bowick

Date: Thu. April 14th, 2005, 4:15 pm-5:15 pm
Location: Rockefeller 301

Particles on a flat surface usually pack into a simple triangular lattice. How does this change if curvature is switched on? The minimum energy configuration for repulsively interacting particles on curved surfaces is a challenging problem with applications to mathematical physics, computer science and a variety of biological, chemical and condensed matter systems. I will discuss the universal proliferation of novel defect arrays (“scars”) in the ground state of such spherical crystals for sufficiently large systems, including experimental results for self-assembled spherical colloidal crystals.

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