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Are there Universal Laws in Non-Equilibrium Statistical Physics?
from 24 August 2020 to 18 September 2020 Nordita, Stockholm



Nordita, Stockholm, Sweden


Equilibrium statistical physics provides an extremely powerful, universal formalism that tells us how many-particle systems in thermal equilibrium behave, and how we can characterize their properties by only a few macroscopic quantities. However, most systems and processes found in nature are out of equilibrium. Think of any living organism, or directed transport in cells mediated by molecular motors. On a more abstract level, the most important examples include systems in a non-equilibrium initial or transient state, systems which are driven away from equilibrium by externally imposed forces, gradients or other non-equilibrium sources, or systems which are maintained in a non-equilibrium steady state by perpetual energy conversion. Often these systems consist of only a few entities and are so small that thermal fluctuations play a prominent role. It has been a vision from the early days of statistical mechanics to develop a theoretical description for such small non-equilibrium systems that is comparably powerful and universal as is equilibrium statistical physics. In recent years a number of new ideas and approaches in this direction, such as largedeviation theory, non-equilibrium phase transitions, and stochastic thermodynamics, have led to the first discoveries of exact relations characterizing universal properties of small non-equilibrium systems, which are valid beyond linear response. The aim of this program is to bring together the leading experts in (non-equilibrium) statistical physics to critically discuss and evaluate the latest developments towards a universal theory for non-equilibrium systems.

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Dates: from 24 August 2020 09:00 to 18 September 2020 18:00
Location: Nordita, Stockholm
Room: 122:026
Chairs: EICHHORN, Ralf
DE WIJN, Astrid

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