November 2007

In this Issue

Message from the Chair

As Chair of the Division of Chemical Physics (DCP) of the American Physical Society, I extend greetings and best wishes to all members of the Division and encourage you to attend the next annual March Meeting in New Orleans, Louisiana, from March 10-14, 2008. Will Castleman, our Chair-Elect, has organized a superb program covering a broad range of topics of interest to the Chemical Physics community. The program comprises a series of Focus Sessions in selected areas, each with a small number of invited speakers and many contributed talks, as well as general contributed sessions with contributed talks only. If you have not done so already, please check the APS web site and submit an abstract for the session closest to your interests. I also encourage you to have your post-doctoral fellows and graduate students submit abstracts for contributed talks. The March Meeting is a terrific forum for junior researchers to speak at a major conference, and for established researchers to engage with their colleagues. The abstract submission deadline is November 27, 2007.

The DCP is an organization representing a broad range of research interests and activities historically across the boundaries of physics and chemistry, and today extending to fields of biology, materials science, environmental and earth science, and many other disciplines. At present, DCP's functions include the organization of chemical physics programs in the annual March meeting, administering the Dependent Care Award and Graduate Student Travel Award programs for encouraging participation in the March meeting by members with child-care issues and students, and managing the process awarding APS Fellowships and the APS Prizes through the Division (Broida, Langmuir, Plyler). All these functions are aimed at promoting interactions among chemical physicists and with physicists in other fields, and continuing the development of chemical physics as a discipline of research and scientific enterprise.

DCP is presently facing several challenges that will need the input and assistance from members. Foremost among them is to increase the size of the membership which stands at about 2,200. The size of the membership dictates the amount of resources DCP will have to support its activities, including the size of the DCP program in the annual meetings and the number of fellows it can elect. We urge you to encourage your students - students membership is free the first year - and your colleagues to sign up for APS and DCP membership. Members enjoy a variety of benefits including networking opportunities, low premium life insurance, and reduced meeting fees. Also, if you know any APS members with interests in chemical physics who are not in DCP, please encourage them to sign up for DCP when they renew their annual membership.

DCP greatly appreciates the input from its members on the topics that are addressed in the annual meeting. While the Executive Committee does its best to name challenging and interesting symposium topics, some of the best ones are suggested by the membership. Please forward your ideas for focused topics for the 2009 March meeting to any of the officers of the division. Better yet, please join us in the Division meeting in New Orleans to voice your ideas.

It gives me great pleasure to announce that Will Castleman will become the next Chair and Eric Heller the Chair-Elect after the March meeting. They will be assisted by the excellent effort of Council Member Charles Parmenter and the Division Executive Committee. I would like thank past Chairs Hai-Lung Dai and Mark Ratner for their efforts on behalf of the Division, and to extend special thanks to Bruce Garrett, who served as Secretary-Treasurer of the DCP for seven years before being succeeded by Andrew Rappe.

Dan Neumark

APS March 2008 Meeting Deadlines

March Meeting Information

Abstract Submission Deadline
27 Nov 2007

Postdeadline Abstracts
28 Dec 2008

Early Registration Deadline (lowest fees)
14 Jan 2008

Satellite Meeting Requests
18 Jan 2008

11 Feb 2008

Late Registration Deadline (higher fees):
11 Feb 2008

APS March Meeting Child Care Grant (pdf)
15 Jan 2008

APS DCP March Meeting Dependent Child Care Award
17 Feb 2008

APS DCP March Meeting Graduate Travel Fellowships
24 Nov 2007

APS DCP 2008 Fellowship Deadline
8 Feb 2008

March 2008 National Meeting DCP Focus Sessions

We encourage you to submit abstracts to the APS 2008 March meeting, especially in sessions organized and sponsored by the Division of Chemical Physics. We have worked hard to organize focus sessions that will be of interest to the DCP membership, and so we hope you will support them by submitting abstracts and by attending.

The deadline for abstract submission is approaching. Abstracts must be submitted online by Tuesday, November 27 (5 p.m. EST). Information on the meeting can be found at

This year, the DCP is sponsoring the following focus topics at the March Meeting. If your abstracts fall into these areas, please consider using these sorting category numbers so that the abstracts can be sorted into the proper sessions.

11.8.1 Quantum Control (DCP)
11.8.2 Cluster Assembled Nanoscale Materials (DCP)
17.13.4 and 11.8.3. Frontiers in Electronic Structure Theory (DCP/DCOMP)
11.8.4 Fundamental Issues in Catalysis (DCP)
11.8.5 Advances in Atmospheric Aerosol Science (DCP)
11.8.6 Photophysics of Cold Molecules (DCP)

11.8.1 Quantum Control (DCP)
Organized by: Vlasta Bonacic-Koutecky
The use of ultrafast laser techniques, employing pump / dump and interference methods, is an active area of research. Pulse shaping and associated wavepacket dynamics involved in coherent control are related topics to be discussed. The wide variety of approaches employed allow, for example, the steering of reactions and influencing the course of photophysical events. Recent theoretical and experimental advances in this area of research will be explored in this focus session.

11.8.2 Cluster Assembled Nanoscale Materials (DCP)
Organized by: Shiv N. Khanna
Developing concepts for tailoring the reactive, optical, electronic, and magnetic properties of nanoscale materials is an area of growing interest. One viable approach involves exploring a "bottom up" method in which clusters with unique properties are identified that can function as building blocks of new materials. Recent theoretical and experimental advances will be surveyed in this focus session, with attention to systems whose properties do not simply scale with size and to ones where one atom/molecule directly influences their properties. The concepts of "superatoms", where clusters function as mimics of elements of the periodic table, also will be discussed.

17.13.4 and 11.8.3. Frontiers in Electronic Structure Theory (DCP/DCOMP)
Co-organized by: Andrew M. Rappe & Jorge O. Sofo
The principal aim of this focus session is to explore topics at the forefront of electronic structure theory, with particular emphasis on novel developments, including those where chemists and physicists often do not interact. New ideas in density functional theory, wavefunction-based methods, reduced density matrices and other distribution functions will be covered. Complementing these developments will be new algorithms for large-scale applications and selected applications to problems ranging from the molecular to the nanoscale to the solid state.

11.8.4 Fundamental Issues in Catalysis (DCP)
Organized by: Francisco Zaera
Catalytic processes have a direct bearing on virtually all aspects of an industrial nation, from manufacturing to energy and the environment. In recent years there have been major advances in elucidating fundamental phenomena governing their behavior and effectiveness. Relevant physical properties that influence the functioning of the catalyst include size, morphology and composition and structure, charge state, and electronic properties. Recent theoretical and experimental advances in heterogeneous processes will be considered, with attention to the basic operative physical phenomena of the catalyst.

11.8.5 Advances in Atmospheric Aerosol Science (DCP)
Co-organized by: Shanhu Lee & Kevin Wilson
Atmospheric aerosols play a major role in atmospheric phenomena from being sites of condensation to ones which influence heterogeneous reactions. They frequently arise from the nucleation of the products of pollutant reactions and hence have an impact on atmospheric chemistry through pollutant scavenging and removal processes. Their role in the earth's radiation balance and climate are also subjects of considerable interest. Consideration of current understanding of these various aspects, including the characterization of their properties and methods of analysis, will be the subject of this focus session.

11.8.6 Photophysics of Cold Molecules (DCP)
Co-organized by: Andrey Vilesov & Jochen Kupper
The chemical physics of cold molecules is an area of intense current interest; the subject ranges from one in which molecular spectroscopy is accomplished in liquid helium droplets to the search for quantum effects in other fluids, and the study of Bose-Einstein condensation for molecular species produced and/or cooled by optical and also deceleration techniques. These various subjects will be discussed in this focus session.

Congratulations to APS Prize Winners

The Division of Chemical Physics extends its congratulations to all the 2008 APS Prize Award, Medal, Lectureship, and Dissertation Award winners.

The three awards currently administered by the DCP are the Broida, Plyler, and Langmuir Prizes.

The Earle K. Plyler Prize for Molecular Spectroscopy is administered by the DCP and funded by generous contributions from the George E. Crouch Foundation and Spectra-Physics.

It is our great pleasure to congratulate Steven G. Boxer, the 2008 recipient of the APS Earl K. Plyler Prize for Molecular Spectroscopy. "For his creation of the new spectroscopic technique of vibrational Stark spectroscopy, and its insightful applications to a variety of condensed phase systems, including the bacterial photosynthetic reaction center."

The Herbert P. Broida Prize is administered by the DCP and funded by generous contributions from the friends and colleagues of Herbert P. Broida. It is awarded by the APS in odd-numbered years.

The Irving Langmuir Prize in Chemical Physics is administered by the DCP and funded by generous contributions from the GE Fund and GE R&D. It is awarded by the APS in odd-numbered years and by the American Chemical Society in even-numbered years.

More information about winners of APS prizes and awards in 2008.

Fellowship Committee and Nominations

The DCP extends its thanks to the 2007 DCP Fellowship Committee, Marsha Lester (chair), Al Wagner, and Hailung Dai.

We encourage the nomination for fellowship of deserving candidates. Nominations for 2008 APS Fellowship to be considered by the DCP Fellowship Committee should be made before the deadline, which will be 8 February 2008. Instructions for submitting a nomination for consideration next year are included on the APS web site.

DCP Membership

Membership in the American Physical Society's Division of Chemical Physics allows you to directly support a primary forum for chemical physics research. The status and influence of the DCP within the APS is dependent on the number of DCP members. Increasing DCP membership is crucial to preserving this important professional asset. If you are not a DCP member, we encourage you to join on the web or by phone (301-209-3280).

DCP Elections for 2008-09 Officers

The DCP extends its thanks to the 2007 DCP Nominating Committee, Hrvoje Petek (chair), Alec Wodtke, and Wendell Hill.

The following candidates are running for office from April 2008 to March 2009.

Vice Chair

  • R. J. Dwayne Miller, University of Toronto
  • Arthur Suits, Wayne State University

Member at Large

  • Tamar Seideman, Northwestern University
  • Xueming Yang, Dalian Institute of Chemical Physics

The election will begin soon. Please vote!

Upcoming Conferences of possible interest to DCP Membership

Gordon Research Conferences
Water and Aqueous Solutions

July 27 - Aug. 1, 2008
Holderness School
Plymouth, NH
Chair: Alan K. Soper
Vice Chairs: Victoria Buch & Pavel Jungwirth

Gordon Research Conferences
Vibrational Spectroscopy

August 3-8, 2008
Mount Holyoke College
South Hadley, MA
Chair: Philip J. Reid
Vice Chairs: Brooks H. Pate & Tianquan Lian

Gordon Research Conferences
Molecular and Ionic Clusters

Sept. 7-12, 2008
Centre Paul Langevin
Aussois, France.
Co-chairs: Dan Neumark & Jeremy Hutson