Jean-Louis Barrat

Department of Physics, Université Joseph Fourier

Jean-Louis Barrat graduated from Ecole Normale Superieure in Paris, and obtained his PhD from University Pierre and Marie Curie (Paris) in 1987. He worked as a postdoctoral researcher at the Technische Universität München in theoretical physics and at the University of California, Santa Barbara in chemical engineering. After six years as a research associate at the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS), he took a professor position at the University of Lyon, where he created a research group on modeling in materials science, before becoming the head of the Condensed Matter Laboratory from 2007 to 2010. In 2011 he moved to the Laboratory for Interdisciplinary Physics at the University Joseph Fourier in Grenoble.

His research interests cover application of statistical and computer simulations to various aspects of materials science, and he has made seminal contributions to our understanding of complex fluids, plasticity of glasses and amorphous materials in general. Professor Barrat was a junior member of the Institut Universitaire de France from 1997 to 2002, and since 2009 has been reappointed as senior member. He was awarded the CNRS Bronze Medal in 1991, the Paul Langevin prize (theoretical physics) of the French Physical Society in 2000, and the CNRS silver medal in 2012. He is the author of about 140 publications in international journals and of a textbook. His current research is supported by an advanced research grant of the European Research Council.

Primary Recipient Awards

French Scholars Lecture Series, Jean-Louis Barrat, 2013

Jean-Louis Barrat

Lecture Topic: "Multiscale Simulation: Connecting Statistical Physics to Engineering Applications and Materials Properties."

The development of nanosciences raises new challenges and opportunities for material sciences. One may broadly say that these new challenges fall in two different categories. Firstly, how do the properties of matter evolve as a function of the scale under consideration, and in particular when the dimensions of devices fall into the nanoscale range? While this question is most often discussed for electronic properties, it also arises for many other usage properties of materials, in particular mechanical, flow or thermal properties. Second, can one make use of a better knowledge of the nanoscale properties to gain a better understanding of, and possibly improve, macroscopic properties of materials that involve internal structures at various scales? These questions are intimately related to the development of multiscale modelling approaches, a rather broad domain which is understood here as methods that allow one to establish relevant links between phenomena taking place at different scales of description, and assess the validity of each description at different length and time scales.

In this spirit, the presentation will address problems that are of current interest to the materials science and engineering community, and involve particular challenges in bridging the length and time scales gaps, such as interfacial transfers or mechanical properties of nanostructured materials. The presentation will connect the fundamental questions that the physicist wants to address, such as the description of elementary processes that govern heat or momentum transfer from surfaces and across molecules, deformation of amorphous materials, to more applicative questions such as flow in microchannels, heat transfer in nanofluids or nanocomposites mechanical properties.