Professor Ivan Smalyukh, Department of Physics, University of Colorado at Boulder


Hosted by Prof Mark Dennis, School of Physics and Astronomy

March – April 2019

Prof Smalyukh of the University of Colorado, Boulder is an international leader in topological and soft matter physics, solitons, liquid crystals, colloids, sustainable energy and photonics, and he will be visiting the University of Birmingham to consolidate and strengthen these interdisciplinary research areas at the newly-established UoB Centre for Topological Science and Engineering (CTSE). This programme will build on the legacy of former Birmingham academics: Nobel Laureates M Kosterlitz and D Thouless, and particularly THR Skyrme, who discovered topological solitons as models of atomic nuclei. These are currently intensively studied in modern material systems and have the potential to drive future technologies.

Prof Smalyukh’s Fellowship will include two public lectures and a Scientific Workshop; an ideal opportunity for new experimental investigations of topological solitons in soft matter systems at UoB, and this will connect to themes ranging from self-assembly to sustainability, fostering research synergy at the intersection of topology, soft materials and optics.

Prof Smalyukh is a very prolific author, publishing 10 articles in the first 4 months of 2018, including one in Science, one in Nature Materials and one in PNAS. Additionally, Prof Smalyukh is authoring a book on topology in liquid crystal colloids, and during his Fellowship he will also explore the foundations of solitonic and knotted fields, including in physical systems like liquid crystals, magnets and light.

If you would like full details of the plans for Professor Smalyukh’s fellowship or would like to meet with him during his visit as an Institute of Advanced Studies Distinguished Visiting Fellow, please contact Sue Gilligan: