SFB TR6 Summer School on Soft Matter

"Physics of colloidal suspensions and granular media"



The scope of this Summer School will be on the physics common to colloidal dispersions and granular media. Colloidal dispersions are suspensions of mesoscopic particles ranging from some nanometer to some micrometers in size and having various shapes (spheres, platelets, rods) in a molecular solvent. Among the different soft matter systems (polymers, liquid crystals, micelles etc.), colloidal dispersions play an important role as model systems, since their properties can be tuned in a very controlled way. A prominent characteristic of such systems is that the effective interactions between their constituent particles can be externally adjusted and that gravity plays only a minor role because of the relatively small particle size and buoyancy. Granular media are dense packings of macroscopic particles, often of irregular shape (sand, pile of rice, steel beads etc..) which may or may not be suspended in a liquid. Here gravity is dominant but, due to shaking, levitation or poring, complex dynamics and flow behaviour may occur. In this school an attempt will be made to bring together leading experts in both fields and to discuss similarities and differences in their physical properties and theoretical description. There seems to be a continous cross-over from dense colloidal suspensions to wet granular media which is exploited. Phenomena like aggregation, jamming, structural arrest, visco-elasticity and non-equilibrium are central issues here. We expect that by exchange of concepts and methodology this workshop type school will be beneficial for both fields and may help to generate an overlapping community between them.


B. Andreotti (Paris), I. Aronson (Argonne), J.L. Barrat (Lyon), R. Behringer (Durham), K. Binder (Mainz), J. Brady (Pasadena), P. Chaikin (New York), J. Dhont (Jülich), D. Durian (Philadelphia), S. Egelhaaf (Düsseldorf), S. Fraden (Waltham), M. Fuchs (Konstanz), B. Dünweg (Mainz), A. Liu (Philadelphia), T. Mullin (Manchester), G. Nägele (Jülich), T. Palberg (Mainz), W. Poon (Edinburgh), O. Pouliquen (Marseille), I. Rehberg (Bayreuth), F. Sciortino (Rome), M. Shattuck (New York), M. Sperl (Cologne), A. van Blaaderen (Utrecht), E. Weeks (Atlanta), D. Weitz (Harvard), A. Zippelius (Göttingen)