APS News

Meeting Briefs

Four Corners Section Meeting: Harry Lustig (Photo courtesy of Alaina Levine)
Four Corners Section Meeting: Harry Lustig (Photo courtesy of Alaina Levine)

Four Corners Section, October 1-2, Tucson, AZ
The APS Four Corners Section held its second meeting at the University of Arizona in October, featuring contributions from all fields of physics. Friday afternoon's plenary session featured Marlon Scully of Texas A&M University, speaking on Bose-Einstein condensates and their analogy to laser phase transitions, followed by a tour of the University Mirror Laboratory. The banquet Friday evening was followed by a public lecture on cosmology and new evidence for the acceleration of the expansion of the universe by Robert Krishner of Harvard University. Other highlights included a lecture on the science behind the popular TV series "Star Trek" by Andre Bormanis, a consultant on the series. Harry Lustig, APS Treasurer emeritus, provided a comprehensive account of the founding and evolution of the APS since 1899 as part of the Centennial celebration. Saturday afternoon's plenary session featured speakers from each state in the section, covering a wide range of topics, including in-situ microscopy of the growth of quantum dot islands, statistics of the cosmic density field, solar system studies, and the origin of universal scaling in biology from molecules and cells to whales.

Ohio Section, October 8-9, Dayton, OH
The APS Ohio Section held its annual fall meeting at Wright State University in Ohio in October, hosted jointly with the Air Force Institute of Technology. The four lectures focused on the history of various physics disciplines in honor of the APS Centennial and the 60th anniversary of the Ohio Section. On Friday afternoon, Norman Ramsey of Harvard University spoke on the history of atomic and molecular beams, along with Lawrence Slifkin of the University of North Carolina who summarized the history of defects in solids. They were followed by a special social hour and a special Centennial display featuring a collage of photos on early educational physics apparatus taken by Kenyon College's Thomas Greenslade, who was also the after-dinner banquet speaker. Saturday morning's plenary session featured lectures by Nicolaas Bloembergen of Harvard University on the last century in nonlinear optics, and Charles Slichter of the University of Illinois on the history of magnetic resonance.

New York State Section, October 22-23, Brockport, NY
The APS New York State Section held its annual fall meeting at the State University of New York at Brockport in October and focused on low-temperature physics and nonlinear dynamics and chaos. Friday afternoon's sessions featured lectures on aerogel and 3He-introducing disorder into a superfluid; the superfluid transition of 4He as a test of critical phenomena; the photophysics of silver halide nanoclusters; and the flow properties of granular matter. Kenneth Schlecht of SUNY's Chemistry Department spoke after Friday evening's banquet on the excitement of chemistry. On Saturday morning, the sessions covered such topics as nonlinear patterns in nature, swirling of superfluid films, laser cooling and Bose-Einstein condensation, and spatiotemporal organization during ventricular fibrillation.

Texas Section, October 28-30, Austin, TX
The APS Texas Section held its annual fall meeting in October at the University of Texas, Austin (UTA), featuring an opening plenary lecture on high-temperature superconductivity by Paul Chu of the University of Houston. In addition to the usual technical papers in such subfields as statistical mechanics, nanoparticles, femtosecond physics, and particle physics, Friday afternoon's program included two sessions on physics in industry, with lectures on flat panel display technologies, chemical and physical characterization of semiconductors, micro-Raman analysis applications, and making integrated circuits on spherical surfaces. In honor of the APS Centennial, the banquet speaker, David Gavenda of UTA, gave an overview of the last 100 years of physics in the state of Texas. Saturday's session on biophysics featured papers on optical spectroscopy and imaging for pre-cancer detection and the use of multiphoton-excited fluorescence as a biological probe. In a more unusual area, another Saturday session focused on forensic science, with talks on DNA analysis, drugs and toxicology, and fingerprint analysis.

New England Section, November 5-6, Waterville, ME
The APS New England Section held its annual fall meeting at Colby College in November. Friday afternoon's invited session focused on quantum technology with lectures on quantum information and coherent control, followed by a banquet with a keynote address about the Keck Observatory by Gary Chanan of the University of California, Irvine. Saturday morning began with a session on physics in elementary school education, featuring lectures on developmental issues for grades K-8 and the use of bright light-emitting diodes to teach elementary grade levels about physics. The meeting closed with a session on novel semiconductors, with talks on organic LEDs and semiconductors.

Southeastern Section, November 7-9, Chapel Hill, NC
The APS Southeastern Section held its annual fall meeting in November at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, organized jointly with corresponding geographical sections from the Materials Research Society and the American Vacuum Society. Invited sessions covered such topics as physics teaching and education, imaging with hyper-polarized gases, physics with high-intensity lasers, thermo-ferroelectric materials, free electron lasers, and nonequilibrium dynamics and spatial structure. On Monday, the AVS and MRS organized additional sessions on novel materials fabrication and on fabrication, processing and characterization of wide band-gap materials. In honor of the APS Centennial, the Centennial Timeline Wall Chart was on display throughout the meeting, and Monday evening's banquet featured a lecture by Richard Voss of Florida State University on fractals and scaling in nature, culture and finance.

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Editor: Barrett H. Ripin
Associate Editor: Jennifer Ouellette