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Monday, August 11, 2008
3:00 PM - 4:00 PM
CNLS Conference Room (TA-3, Bldg 1690)


Exactly Solvable Models of Random Surfaces

Douglas Abraham
University of Oxford

A general introduction will be given to the theory of Structure and Phase Transitions in equilibrium statistical mechanical models of surfaces, stressing the significance of exact solutions. The concepts of wetting and of roughening will be explained. This will be followed by the main part, which is the exact solution of certain Volmer-Weber and Stransky-Krastanov surface-structural models in equilibrium statistical mechanics; (these models are usually encountered in dynamical theory of epitaxy). This new work is in collaboration with C.M. Newman, CIMS, NYU. It makes use of a mapping from a 3-d surface model to an associated statistical mechanical model, which is then studied by exact solution techniques and by theory of interacting percolation. The principal physical relevance of this work is to the theory of heterogeneous catalysis. It also affords a practical example of Schramm-Lowner evolution (SLE), a subject of considerable current interest in mathematical physics.

Host: Avadh Saxena, T-11