Antoine Georges receives the 2022 Feenberg Memorial Medal
Antoine Georges was rewarded for the development of the dynamic mean field theory, which provides a better understanding of quantum systems made up of a large number of interacting particles. Applied to materials such as superconducting copper oxides, rare-earth or actinide compounds or ultra-cold gases, it opens the way to a better understanding of the exotic phases of these materials. Together with Gabriel Kotliar from Rutgers University and Dieter Vollhardt from the University of Augsburg, he has just been awarded the Feenberg 2022 medal.
A few cubic millimetres of matter contain billions of billions of electrons. Given that each of these electrons interacts with its fellow electrons, this makes it difficult for condensed matter physicists to study the properties of materials. The quantum physics equations that govern these systems are known, but it is impossible to solve them exactly when a very large number of particles are interacting. It is then necessary to rely on theories that allow for approximate calculations.
One such approximation is the Dynamical Mean Field Theory (DMFT). It is particularly useful in the case where electrons in the system are "strongly correlated", i.e. highly interdependent. Unlike the traditional approach in solid state physics, which treats the behaviour of electrons as that of a gas to simplify calculations, the dynamic mean field theory considers these materials directly as a collection of atoms. The basic equations of this theory are supplemented by numerical methods to solve them.
DMFT is today an important tool for the study of quantum models and materials. Its development and extension is still a very active research area.
About Antoine Georges :
X1980, Antoine Georges created, in 2003 at the Centre de physique théorique de l'École polytechnique (CPHT*), a research team on the physics of materials with strong quantum correlations. He was Professor at the École Polytechnique until 2020, and chaired the Physics Department from 2006 to 2009. He was appointed Professor at the Collège de France in 2009 (Chair of Condensed Matter Physics). He is also Director of the Center for Computational Quantum Physics at the Flatiron Institute, New York. Antoine Georges has already received several awards including the Condensed Matter Europhysics Prize in 2006, the CNRS Silver Medal in 2007, and the Aneesur Rahman Prize for Computational Physics in 2020.
*CPHT: a joint research unit CNRS, École Polytechnique - Institut Polytechnique de Paris