Mathematical Colloquium

Friday, April 21 2017, 2:15pm

Bott periodicity and the "Periodic Table" of topological insulators and superconductors

Martin Zirnbauer (Universität zu Köln)

Bott periodicity is said to be one of the most surprising phenomena in topology. Perhaps even more surprising is its recent appearance in condensed matter physics. Building on work of Schnyder et al, Kitaev argued that symmetry-protected ground states of gapped free-fermion systems, also known as topological insulators and superconductors, organize into a kind of periodic table governed by a variant of the Bott periodicity theorem. In this colloquium, I will sketch the mathematical background, the physical context, and some new results of this ongoing story of mathematical physics.

Ort:  Raum 008/SeMath, Pontdriesch 14-16, 52062 Aachen