Meeting Minutes

March 3, 2015

Business Meeting Minutes

  1. The meeting was called to order at 5:45 pm by David Chandler, who substituted for Gil Nathanson. Dave thanked the current (2014) Executive Committee members and introduced the incoming members. He also thanked the members of the DCP Nominating Committee for the 2015 election and announced the members of the nominating committee for the 2016 APS Fellows. In addition, he congratulated the newly honored 2015 APS Fellows, the winner and two runners up for the inaugural Doctoral DCP Thesis Award, the winners of the 2015 DCP Young Investigator Travel Award, and the winners of the 2015 Plyler, Broida, and Langmuir Prizes. A discussion followed about how to attract new Fellows to attend the March meeting. One possibility is to invite them to give talks in a special session. David Nesbitt requested that he be informed of the names of the new Fellows as early as possible so that he may invite them to speak at the conference.

  2. David Chandler led a discussion of the new DCP Doctoral Thesis Award. This year an award of 1,000 plus up to 1,000 in travel expenses was funded entirely by DCP. A proposal was prepared by Robert Gordon requesting future APS sponsorship of this Award. If the proposal is approved by the APS Council, the Division will be required to raise funds to endow the Award. For a 1,000 Award, a minimum of $25,000 would have to be raised. There was broad consensus to name the award after a prominent chemical physicist and to solicit funds from that person’s former students and post-docs. There was unanimous agreement that the Doctoral Thesis Award Committee should consist of the Past Chair of DCP, the current Chair, the Vice Chair, and the Secretary/Treasurer. Applications consisting of an electronic copy of the nominee’s thesis, a 750 or 1,000 word summary (the maximum to be decided by the committee), the nominee’s CV, a letter by the advisor, and a seconding letter should be sent to the Secretary/Treasurer. The nominee and both letter writers must be members of DCP.

  3. It was agreed that a committee consisting of the three DCP Members-at-Large will evaluate the applications for the Young Investigator Travel Award. The committee will be chaired by the senior member (i.e., by the member in his/her third year of service).

  4. Marsha Lester expressed commitment of AIP Publishing to continue funding the Plyler Award, with the intent of maintaining a robust alignment of the Journal of Chemical Physics with DCP. To strengthen this alignment, Marsha proposed that a member of the DCP Executive Committee serve on the Plyler Prize Selection Committee. David Chandler volunteered to serve in this capacity once the proposal is approved by the DCP Council. In addition, JCP/AIP Publishing would like a DCP canvassing committee to identify and encourage nomination of a diverse pool of candidates. To assist in this process, DCP and JCP/AIP Publishing will continue efforts to solicit nominations through APS announcements, Molecular Dynamics News, and a “call for nominations” to the JCP author database. There was a unanimous vote to keep the present name of the prize, “Earl K. Plyler Prize for Molecular Spectroscopy & Dynamics.”

  5. Marsha Lester gave an update on changes and innovations in the Journal of Chemical Physics. These include publication of four special topics issues, with three more being planned, and the establishment of new, strengthened criteria for acceptance of papers by the journal. David Chandler proposed that a session at the APS March meeting include talks based on JCP Editors’ Choice papers in order to strengthen the connection between JCP and the March meeting.

  6. Robert Gordon gave an update on membership of DCP. Despite the increase in membership last year resulting from recruitment at the March meeting, the January, 2015 data showed a small decrease (see Appendix 1), continuing a long term drop of 12 += 2 members per year since 2001. This decrease, in combination with a steady increase of total APS membership of 1.2%/yr over the same period, has produced a steady drop in the DCP fraction of APS membership from 4.3% in 2000 to 3.4% in 2015. A discussion followed on how to attract and maintain membership. David Chandler proposed establishing a three-member committee of graduate students and post-docs to organize social activities at the March meeting, such as a beer/pizza party and an opportunity to “dine with the experts.” The committee would be given a budget and encouraged to use social media to publicize its activities. Robert pointed out that many of the authors of contributed papers are not members of DCP and are a potential pool for recruitment.

  7. Robert Gordon gave an update on finances of DCP. The assets of DCP have increased steadily over the past five years and currently are at a level of 66K. Most years the Division runs a surplus. In 2014, revenue of 19.9K only slightly exceeded expenses of $19.5K, partly because of a one-time contribution of 2.5K to the APS International Travel program. (See Appendix 2.)

  8. David Chandler presented an overview of DCP programming at the 2015 March meeting, which featured five focus symposia in 14 sessions with 54 invited speakers and 10 topic sessions covering four areas.

  9. David Nesbitt presented a draft for the 2016 March meeting. He identified five focus symposia and has invited three organizers for each. (See Appendix 3.)

  10. Tim Zwier presented a list of possible topics for the 2017 March meeting. (See Appendix 4.)

  11. Amy Mullin presented a report on the APS Council. A reorganization of how the Council interacts with the APS Board gives DCP an opportunity to have its concerns addressed by the Council.

  12. Dave Chandler concluded the meeting with a discussion of objectives for the coming year. These include raising money for endowing the Thesis Award and finding new ways to engage the chemical physics community and increase DCP membership. The meeting was adjourned at 7:15 pm.

Appendix 1. DCP Membership

Appendix 1. DCP Membership Line Graph

Appendix 1. DCP Membership Line Graph

Appendix 2. DCP Finances in 2014

Appendix 2. DCP Finances in 2014 Pie Graph

Appendix 3. Focus Symposia for the March Meeting 2016

  1. Chemical Physics of Complex Gas Phase Environments: Combustion, Atmospheric, and Astrochemistry (Zwier, Suits, Lester)
  2. Physics of Emerging Materials for Solar Energy Applications (Klimov, Efros, Kuno)
  3. Plasmonics and Beyond (Odom, Petek, Garcia de Abajo)
  4. Chemistry and Physics of Confined, Biological and Interfacial Water (Tobias, Levinger, TBD)
  5. Advances in Density Functional Theory (Truhlar, Maitra, Perdew)

Appendix 4. Possible Focus Symposia for the March Meeting 2017

Topics proposed by Zwier

  • Chemical Physics of Hydrogen-bonded Networks (Skinner, Leitner)
  • The kinetics and thermodynamics of aggregation and self-assembly (Joan Emma-Shea, Forefronts in chemical imaging (Ji-xin Cheng, Sunney Xie)
  • Spectroscopy and Dynamics of Multi-chromophores (Scholes, Alexandra Olaya-Castro)
  • Complex potential energy landscapes (Wales, Roy Johnston)
  • Conical intersections
  • Chemical Physics at the Edges:
  • Advances in methods from the microwave to X-ray regions
  • Ultrafast and Ultraslow (?)

Topics remaining from Nesbitt’s 2016 list

  • Chemical Physics at Interfaces (Ceyer, Nathanson, Sibener)
  • Single Molecule Biophysics of Nucleic Acids : “When Experiment Met Theory” (Rueda, Schulten, Lilley?)
  • Advances in MD Simulations: From Atomistic to Coarse Graining (Voth, Hammes-Schiffer, Thirumalai)
  • Supercooled Liquids (Kay)
  • Electron Transfer: Experiment and Theory (Subotnik, Wasielewski)
  • Chemical Physics of Ultracold Molecules (Krems, Ye, Jin, Doyle)
  • Ultrafast and Beyond (Kapteyn, Murnane, Seideman, Leone, Petek)