Throughout the 20th century, plasticity of crystalline materials, in particular metals, has been the subject of an intense research effort. By way of contrast, the question of how a glass – and more generally amorphous or disordered materials – flow under stress has only emerged in the 90s. The mechanical properties of disordered materials are very specific: low rigidity but very high strength, localization of the plastic activity and shear banding, non-newtonian flow in the plastic flow regime… The comprehensive study of these properties is intimately related to studies at both small and large scales. At large system sizes and time scales, models based on statistical physics are needed in order to predict and understand the rheological behavior of amorphous systems. However, the existing methodologies do rely on assumptions concerning the elementary mechanisms at the origin of plasticity and hence are strongly influenced by the informations obtained at smaller scales. Appealing possibilities offered very recently by both high power computing and nanoscale experiments allow to envisage an almost direct comparison between atomistic modelling and experiments, offering vast perspectives of improvements in both fields.
The aim of this workshop is to bring together researchers from different communities, mechanicians, physicists and chemists using various theoretical or experimental approaches in order to favour a consistent picture of the mechanical response of amorphous materials to emerge. Especially, understanding the materials dependence of dissipative mechanisms, as well as the role of the local structure and structural transformations on the spatio-temporal organization of the dissipative rearrangements, is very challenging and has obvious industrical implications in terms of damage control and consequent energy saving. This meeting is intended to create a strong interest for each participant since it will give the possibility for any specialist of a given field to have fruitful interactions with some of the best specialists of neighbouring fields although still connected to the mechanical properties of amorphous solids. The synergy of the workshop should open the participants to the knowledge of neighboring research fields and will possibly induce the emergence of original ideas as well as some interdisciplinary collaborations. In order to detail the general topics that will be discussed in the workshop, we give here a short descriptive list. For the theoretical part at small scale: ab-initio calculations of amorphous systems and links with reliable classical potential forms; Molecular dynamics calculations: strain-stress relationship, description of elasto-plastic, vibrational and rheological behavior. At larger scale: mechanical response through finite elements calculations, statistical models for the rheological response of amorphous systems. The experimental part should include recently developed small-scale experiments: Vibrational Spectroscopy, TEM analysis with image correlation, X-Ray and Neutron Diffraction at a submicrometer scale, Mechanical loadings on Nano-Pillars, confocal microscopy for colloidal glasses.