The principal organizer of the school is SCTMS. Co-organizers are Samara National Research University and the Commission on Mathematical and Theoretical Crystallography of the International Union of Crystallography.
The school was opened with two-day scientific workshop “Applications of topological methods in materials science” where scientists from Brazil, China, Germany, India, Italy, Spain, Switzerland, the UK and Russia made reports. In the opinion of Prof. Vladislav Blatov, their reports confirmed an explosive development of topological and allied methods in materials science, that create promising prospects for further cooperation of SCTMS with the world leading laboratories.
If the workshop in a format of mini-conference with participation of many foreign experts is the first experience for SCTMS, the scientific schools have been conducted since 2008 in the USA, France, Switzerland, Italy, Germany, Spain, Sweden, China, and South Korea. Mega-grant of the Russian Federation Government gave SCTMS an opportunity to organize such scientific schools in Russia. Thus, Samara Center for Theoretical Materials Science regularly gathers together experts in materials science from all over the world.
The present school attracted participants from Federal University of Rio de Janeiro, Federal Polytechnic School of Lausanne, University of Leipzig, University of Hamburg, Materials Science Institute of Madrid, University of Sussex, University of Milan, University of Padova, University of Turin, Istituto Tecnico Industriale Statale Nullo Baldini, University of Delhi, Tribhuvan University, Lomonosov Moscow State University, Skolkovo Institute of Science and Technology, South Ural State University, A.N. Frumkin Institute of Physical Chemistry and Electrochemistry of RAS, Institute of Problems of Chemical Physics of RAS, A.E. Arbuzov Institute of Organic and Physical Chemistry of Kazan Scientific Center of RAS.
Two methods for the analysis of properties of substances and materials are stated in the school theme: topological and quantum. SCTMS researchers successfully develop topological method and acquaint the researchers with the operation principles of ToposPro, a software package being developed under scientific supervision of Prof. Vladislav Blatov, within a series of scientific schools. ToposPro enables to predict theoretical possibility of chemical compounds with given properties. Another method – under the abbreviation “DFT” (DFT, Density Functional Theory) allows calculating electronic structure of particles (molecules, condensed matter). SCTMS research team develop combined application of topological and quantum methods. Such approach discovers new opportunities for prediction of new materials.
“The present school is much like the previous one, including the title, - comments Prof. Blatov. - Significant additions concern the developments of our hybrid methods – topological and quantum. During the last year, our chemists and physicists made a good progress. We are going to present our methods and techniques to our participants. The main difference of the present school is an involvement of researchers who not only master TopoPro, but also make active use of it. In particular, among the participants are students and postgraduate students, as well as professors, our partners, who haven’t applied ToposPro yet or applied it a little. At present, our colleagues feel the need to master these methods. That is why our school is so representational; some participants have PhD or doctor’s degree. Many of them presented reports at the pre-school workshop. They will take part in the school as trainees and present methods, which they applied in ToposPro for solving certain research tasks. We expand our educational activities by attracting TopoPro users in order to share their experience. In the coming year the educational component will be our priority. Prof. Davide Proserpio and I have already conducted a series of webinars. We’re intend to attract more lecturers from foreign laboratories for online training”.
“I’d like to notice that we have new attendees as well as the participants who takes part in our school every year, - says the scientific advisor of SCTMS Prof. Davide Proserpio. – Some of our regular participants who cooperate with us and successfully apply topological approach in scientific activity, made reports at the pre-school workshop. During the school, they will act as tutors. Some of our participants will repeat the school program once again. For many years, I observe how our methods expand, how scientists begin to master them and achieve valuable results”.
The International Scientific School “Combined Topological and DFT Methods for Prediction of New Materials II” will be held until July 10, 2016.