Opportunities for Mesoscale Science
Mesoscale science embraces a wide variety of phenomena emerging at length scales larger than atomic and nano but smaller than macro. Mesoscale phenomena are often intermediate between quantum and classical, between isolated and interacting, and between simple and complex. They typically involve the interaction of many degrees of freedom, including mechanical, electrodynamic, electronic, ionic and chemical. Biology is an inspiring example of meso phenomena, capable of striking functionality such as temperature regulation, muscle contraction and self-healing of tissue. In contrast, inorganic systems typically show much lower levels of complexity and functionality. One vision of mesoscale science is achieving the complexity and functionality of biology with inorganic materials.
Examples of mesoscale materials and chemistry will be given, to stimulate audience input on the nature of mesoscale science and promising research directions. This input will be used in the coming Basic Energy Sciences Advisory Committee (BESAC) report on Opportunities for Mesoscale Science.