Conference Overview

The study of phonons – although a core discipline in the conventional condensed matter physics literature – is currently being viewed in a new light. Whether examined at the nanoscale, microscale or larger scales, the analysis and manipulation of phonons (aka phononics) is opening up a new technological frontier with a potential impact that could match that of electronics almost half a century ago. Indeed a rival field, photonics, is gathering similar momentum. Looking closely, phononics encompasses a range of interconnected disciplines, usually labeled in terms of the type of host “material” that provides the medium for phononic wave propagation. These include phononic crystals, phononic metamaterials, superlattices and periodic structures. The application domains that these phononic materials are impacting, with increasing promise, range from vibration isolation in MEMS components, through frequency sensing in RF communications, to nano-scale thermal transport control in semiconductors. With the recent advent of metamaterials, exotic applications are now added to the list such as acoustic cloaking and superlensing. The interaction of mechanical waves with their optical counterpart in a lattice, i.e., optomechanics, is opening up yet another barrage of opportunities especially in telecommunications.

The coming-of-age of these closely-related disciplines provides a converging point of historical significance for the science of phonons. In 2009, an International Workshop on Phononic Crystals took place in Nice, France and was attended by around 30 experts in the field from around the world. Building on this effort, a larger-in-scale international forum was established in 2011 and Phononics 2011 was inaugurated as a prime international conference for the field. Phononics 2013, the second in the bi-annual series, welcomes scientists and engineers from across the world and across all related disciplines.

The conference scientific focus will be on five main themes underlying the various research tracks in the emerging field of phononics:

  1. Phononic crystals
  2. Phononic metamaterials
  3. Wave propagation in periodic structures
  4. Nano-scale phonon transport
  5. Optomechanics and Coupled Phenomena

The technical program also includes student paper competitions for best oral and poster presentations. Arrangements are under way to enable publication of a selection of papers from the conference in a special issue of an archival journal.

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