Plenary: Steven G. Louie
Electron Excitations & Optical Response of van der Waals Layers: Graphene & Beyond Graphene
Experimental and theoretical studies of atomically thin quasi two-dimensional materials (typically related to some parent van der Waals layered crystals) and their nanostructures have revealed that these systems can exhibit highly unusual behaviors. In this talk, we discuss some theoretical studies of the electronic, transport and optical properties of such systems. We present results on graphene and graphene nanostructures as well as other quasi 2D systems such as monolayer or few-layer transition metal dichalcogenides (e.g., MoS2, MoSe2, WS2, and WSe2). Owing to their reduced dimensionality, these systems present opportunities for unusual manifestation of concepts/phenomena that may not be so prominent or have not been seen in bulk materials. Symmetry and many-body interaction effects often play a critical role in shaping qualitatively and quantitatively their properties. Several novel quantum phenomena are discussed, exploring their physical origin and comparing theoretical predictions with experimental data.
Plenary: Andre Geim
The Rise of van der Waals Heterostructures
Following the advent of graphene, many other one-atom or one-molecule thick crystals have been isolated. These 2D crystals have become one of the hottest topics in materials science and condensed matter physics. Moreover, isolated atomic planes can now be reassembled into designer structures made layer by layer in a precisely chosen sequence. The first but already remarkably complex heterostructures have recently been fabricated and investigated. I will briefly overview our own progress in making such heterostructures with clean and atomically sharp interfaces and then, to illustrate how rich in phenomena the research area is, focus on the electronic properties of lateral superlattices made by placing graphene on boron nitride.
Plenary: Franco Nori
Quantum Circuits as Artificial Atoms on a Chip: A Pedagogical Introduction
Recent technological advances have made it possible to implement atomic-physics and quantum-optics experiments on a chip using artificial atoms. These artificial atoms can be made from either semiconductor quantum dots and, more often, from superconducting circuits. Superconducting circuits based on Josephson junctions exhibit macroscopic quantum coherence and can behave like artificial atoms. Novel electronic devices are being explored with these type of superconducting (low-power-consumption) electronics. This talk presents a pedagogical (and, hopefully, entertaining) brief introduction to this rapidly advancing field. The references [1-13] provide a few overviews on various aspects of this subject and related topics.
 J.Q. You, F. Nori, Atomic Physics and Quantum Optics using Superconducting Circuits, Nature, 474, 589 (2011). (a nine-pages overview of this field).
 J.Q. You, F. Nori, Superconducting circuits and quantum information, Physics Today 58 (11), 42-47 (2005).
 I. Buluta, F. Nori, Quantum Simulators, Science 326, 108 (2009).
 I. Buluta, S. Ashhab, F. Nori, Natural and artificial atoms for quantum computation, Reports on Progress in Physics 74, 104401 (2011).
 F. Nori, Atomic physics with a circuit, Nature Physics 4, 589 (2008).
 F. Nori, Quantum football, Science 325, 689 (2009).
 S.N. Shevchenko, S. Ashhab, F. Nori, Landau-Zener-Stuckelberg interferometry, Physics Reports 492, 1 (2010). (about 50-50 split of review and original work)
 P.D. Nation, J.R. Johansson, M.P. Blencowe, F. Nori, Stimulating uncertainty: Amplifying the quantum vacuum with superconducting circuits, Rev. Mod. Phys., 84, 1-24 (2012).
 I. Georgescu, F. Nori, Quantum technologies: an old new story, Physics World 25, 16-17 (2012). This two-page summary is non-technical.
 A.G. Kofman, S. Ashhab, F. Nori, Weak pre- and post-selected measurements, Physics Reports 520, 43-133 (2012) (about 20 pages review, plus 70 pages of original work).
 Z.-L. Xiang, S. Ashhab, J.Q. You, F. Nori, Hybrid quantum circuits: Superconducting circuits interacting with other quantum systems, Rev. Mod. Phys. 85, 623 (2013).
 C. Emary, N. Lambert, F. Nori, Leggett-Garg Inequalities, Reports on Progress in Physics 77, 016001 (2014).
 I. Georgescu, S. Ashhab, F. Nori, Quantum Simulation, Rev. Mod. Phys. 86, 153 (2014). Also the cover image.