Beautiful and Practical Patterns
Dr. Orest G. Symko
Department of Physics and Astronomy
University of Utah
Patterns can be found everywhere in nature: flowers, spots on leopards, music. They have spatial dependence and/or they can have a temporal dependence. In this talk two systems where symmetry is broken will be discussed. Atoms can form clusters with symmetries which influence the properties of the solids formed with such clusters. An interesting example is the unusual class of solids known as quasicrystals.Their properties are unique. They are not periodic but they are highly ordered. Patterns in time will be demonstrated by heat engines where heat generates sound. It is remarkable as the chaotic nature of heat leads to order, sound of one frequency. This can be applied to a new class of energy converters, where heat or waste heat can generate electricity. Development of such devices will be presented. Applications of the two systems will be discussed.