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Experts in: Optical properties of nanoscale materials and structures

Dharma-Wardana, Chandre


Professeur associé

Professor Dharma-wardana has worked on a wide variety of scientific topics, where the unifying theme is the application of the quantum theory, usually to many-body problems. His work focused on quantum theory, statistical mechanics, and solid state physicsassociated with Raman scattering, energy-relaxation and phonons in nanostructures, quantum Hall effect, the physics of nanotubes and graphene. He worked on a variety of topics such as surface passivisation, quantum dots, organic light-emitting diodes and related nanostructures, energy-relaxation etc., in collaboration with researchers at the NRC, Universities or research institutions in Montreal, Toronto, British Columbia, Livermore, Los Alamos and Paris. A main area of Prof. Dharma-wardana's research has been in many-body theory and plasma physics, often in collaboration with François Perrot of the French Atomic Energy commission. The neutral-pseudo atom model (NPA) for warm dense matter is one of their main contributions of great practical value where finite-temperature density functional theory has been used to formulate a rigorous quantum mechanical approach to hot ionized matter. Subsequently, the construction of the classical-map scheme for quantum systems is a ground-breaking work, leading to the formulation of the classical-map hyper-netted chain method (CHNC). This method has led to a new approach for the evaluation of properties of Fermi liquids and warm-dense matter.

His previous work on the density-functional theory of dense plasmas is now well-established in the NPA model. It has led to the development of methods for the first-principles evaluation of the equation of state, and the transport properties of dense plasmas. His contributions to the energy-relaxation of hot electrons in semiconductors and also in plasmas,have presented a new direction in the theory of non-equilibrium states of two-temperature charged fluids. His paper elucidating the unusual thermal conductivity of clathrates still attracts many citations. His contributions to surface science (e.g. reconstruction of the sulphur-passivated InP surface), nanotechnology, phonons in semiconductor structures, quasi-periodic systems etc., are well known and are contained in over 200 research publications. Dharma-wardana currently serves as a principal research scientist at the National Research Council of Canada, and is a professor of theoretical physics at the Université de Montréal. His most recent book on physics is entitled A Physicist's View of Matter and Mind, published in 2013 by World Scientific.


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Leonelli, Richard


Directeur de département, Professeur titulaire

When a semiconductor material absorbs a photon, an electron is excited into the conduction band, leaving a hole in the valence band. The Coulomb interaction between the electron and the hole generates a bound state called an exciton, which largely controls the optical properties of semiconductors. In addition, when the environment is structured on a nanometric scale, the optical response of the semiconductors is radically altered by quantum confinement.

My research program revolves around the dynamics of excitons when they are created in nanostructured environments, so as to describe how the energy is absorbed and redistributed as part of a representation in terms of collective excitations. Although the subject is fundamental in nature, it is closely related to the development of excitonics, an emergent field that aims to design and manufacture better optical devices for applications ranging from lighting to quantum computing.


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