Young researchers’ seminar in statistical physics

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General info


Aims & scope

Modern aspects of statistical physics and its applications. The seminar welcomes survey talks by senior researchers for the student audience and, more importantly, talks by students of undergraduate and graduate level on their research in progress. Note that therefore abstracts of talks are not always available. Nevertheless we aim at keeping the seminar interesting for senior participants (and so far seem to have been succeeding in this!).


We mostly meet at the premises of Laboratoire Jean-Victore Poncelet at the Independent University of Moscow (access instructions in Russian are here).

Google group

The seminar has a dedicated Google group, poncelet-seminar-jeune (in Russian, in spite of its French name).

Season II: spring 2011

Semianr 12, 26 February 2011

Sergei NECHAEV, P. N. Lebedev Physics Institute & LPTMS, Orsay: Combinatorics of locally free groups and statistical physics

We will talk on word enumeration in a “locally free group”, which approximates the braid group and give a nontrivial estimate on the growth rate of irreducible words in the braid group. This problem will be related to the evaluation of partition function for “lattice animals.”

Season II: fall 2010

Seminar 11, 16 December 2010

Olga Valba, PhysTech & LPTMS, Orsay: From sequence comparison algorithms to the determination of pairing energy between two RNAs.

Noncoding RNAs are those RNAs that do not encode proteins. However they have other important functions, such as regulation of gene expression. A non-coding RNA may pair with a matrix RNA, thus stopping translation from the latter. We present an algorithm to determine the pairing energy of two RNAs in the most general setting, where each RNA may form “cactus-like” structures. An algorithm for reconstruction of the ground state of two paired RNAs will also be described.

Seminar 10, 25 November 2010

Olga STETIUKHINA, MSU Math. & Mech. Dept & N. N. Semenov Institute for Chemical Physics: Correspondence between random walks on an ultrametric discrete lattice and on the p-adic line

Behaviour of complex biological systems, such as protein structure and dynamics, can often be modeled with ultrametric random processes. The corresponding analytical approaches employ a p-adic equation of ultrametric diffusion whereas numerical approaches emphasize a random walk on ultrametric discrete lattice. In this talk we present discrete and contiunuos descriptions of ultrametric random walk or diffusion. All the necessary background from p-adic analysis will be introduced in the course of exposition.

Seminar 9, 11 November 2010

Dmitry USHAKOV, MSU Psychology Dept: Some [neural] network models of the human cognitive system.

Seminar 8, 28 October 2010

Anna BODROVA, MSU Physics Dept: Size distribution of particles in the rings of Saturn.

The rings of Saturn are comprised with microscopic particles of ice dust as well as with boulders as big as a house. The size distribution of these objects is described with a power law for small scales, while the large scales show exponential decay. This distribution can be obtained analytically from a kinetic model for hard spheres that can coalesce or undergo fission upon collisions.

Season I: spring 2010

Seminar 7, 18 June 2010

Alexander MIKHAILOV, Fritz-Haber-Institut der Max-Planck-Gesellschaft, Berlin: Understanding protein machines.

Seminar 6, 21 May 2010

Misha TAMM, MSU Physics Dept: A queue model (continued).

Seminar 5, 2 April 2010

Misha TAMM, MSU Physics Dept: A queue model (continued).

Seminar 4, 26 March 2010

Misha TAMM, MSU Physics Dept: A queue model.

We consider a one-dimensional model of a driven motion which differs from the original ASEP (asymmetric simple exclusion process) in a sense that the moving particles have two internal states - ground (unable to move) and excited (ready to move). Thus, before a particle moves it has to be excited, and after a move the excitation is relaxed. The important feature of the model, which makes it essentially different from the conventional ASEP is that in a case of failed (due to a traffic jam) movement attempt the particle's excitation does not relax.

Seminar 3, 5 March 2010

Gregory KUCHEROV, LIFL & Laboratoire J.-V. Poncelet: On the distribution of word frequencies in genomes.

We observe that the distribution of occurrence numbers of k-words (k-mers) in genomic sequences cannot be explained by Bernoulli ou Markov distributions, usually used in bioinformatics to model DNA sequences. I will speculate on causes and consequences of this observation and propose a probability law that fits well to the observed distribution.

Season I: fall 2009

Seminar 2, 18 December 2009

Olga VALBA, PhysTech: Statistical comparison algorithms for RNA-like macromolecules.

Seminar 1, 27 November 2009

Alexei SHKARIN, PhysTech: Statistical properties of random hierarchical networks.

Last modified: Tue Mar 8 16:59:18 MSK 2011