Jean Pierre Boon

Université libre de Bruxelles

Pr Jean Pierre Boon
Université Libre de Bruxelles
Physics Department
Campus Plaine- CP 231
Avenue F.D. Roosevelt 50
B-1050 Bruxelles - Belgique

Phone: +32-2-650 5527
Fax: +32-2-650 5767

Updated: 12 March 2012

Ph.D. in Chemical Physics, Université Libre de Bruxelles (1964)
D.Sc. in Physical Sciences, Université Libre de Bruxelles (1975)

Scientific Career :

1960-1964 : Research Assistant, Université Libre de Bruxelles;
1964-1967 : Research Associate, University of Chicago;
1967: MTS, Bell Telephone Laboratories, Murray Hill, NJ;
1967-1975 : Chargé de Recherches FNRS, Université Libre de Bruxelles;
1975-1979 : Maître de Recherches FNRS, Université Libre de Bruxelles;
1979-2001 : Directeur de Recherches FNRS and Professor at Université Libre de Bruxelles;
2002- : Professeur de l'Université at Université Libre de Bruxelles.

Consultant and Visiting Professor :
- Bell Telephone Laboratories (1968, 1970)
- Massachussetts Institute of Technology (1972 -- 1984)
- KFA-Julich (1976 -- 1977), Université de Bordeaux (1978 -- 1979)
- Université de Nice (1980 -- 1990), Observatoire de Nice (1991 -- 2001)

Professional Committees :
- European Space Agency: former Chairman of the Physical Sciences Working Group;
- ESA: former Member of the Life and Physical Sciences Advisory Committee;
- European Physical Society: former Chairman of the Statistical and Nonlinear Physics Division;
- EuroPhysics Letters: former co-Editor;
- Journal of New Music Research: former co-Editor.

Awards, Fellowships :
- Prix Jean Stas -- Belgian Royal Academy of Sciences (1965)
- Fulbright Fellow (1964-67)
- Marquis' Who's Who in the World (since 1991)

Scientific Activities

Main field: Statistical Physics.
Current Research: Nonlinear transport phenomena; Statistical Hydrodynamics; Lattice Gas Automata.


Books :
"Molecular Hydrodynamics" by J.P. Boon and S. Yip (McGraw Hill, New York, 1980; reprinted by Dover, 1991)
"Redécouvrir le Temps", by A. Nysenolc et J.P. Boon (Editions de l'Université de Bruxelles, 1988)
"Lattice Gas Hydrodynamics" by J.P. Rivet and J.P. Boon (Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 2001)

Comments on some selected publications

J.P. Boon, J.F. Lutsko, and C. Lutsko, "A microscopic approach to nonlinear reaction-diffusion"
Physical Review E, vol.85, 021126-1-7 (2012)
A microscopic theory for reaction-difusion (R-D) processes is developed by generalizing Einstein's master equation including a reactive term and the mean field formulation leads to a generalized R-D equation with non-classical solutions. For the annihilation reaction A+A+A+...+A -> 0, steady state solutions exhibit either long range power law behavior showing the relative dominance of sub-diffusion over reaction effects in constrained systems; conversely solutions that go to zero at finite distance from the source, i.e. with finite support of the concentration distribution, describe situations where diffusion is slow and extinction is fast. Theoretical results are compared with experimental data for morphogen gradient formation and profiles with infinite support are found correspond to experimental observations. Profiles with finite support which exhibit stronger sensitivity to input flux changes have not been observed in morphogen gradient formation. This observation suggests that extreme sensitivity excludes this type of profile in natural morphogen gradient formation because degradation is too fast with respect to diffusion in order to establish the necessary gradient for subsequent cell differentiation.

J.P. Boon, "Complexity, time and music"
Advances in Complex Systems, 13, 155-164 (2010)
The concept of complexity as considered in terms of its algorithmic definition proposed by G.J. Chaitin and A.N. Kolmogorov is revisited for the dynamical complexity of music. When music pieces are cast in the form of time series of pitch variations, concepts of dynamical systems theory can be used to define new quantities such as the dimensionality as a measure of the global temporal dynamics of a music piece, and the Shanon entropy as an evaluation of its local dynamics. When these quantities are computed explicitly for sequences sampled in the music literature from the 18th to the 20th century, no indication is found of a systematic increase in complexity paralleling historically the evolution of classical western music, but the analysis suggests that the fractional nature of art might have an intrinsic value of more general significance.

J.P. Rivet and J.P. Boon, "Lattice Gas Hydrodynamics"
Cambridge University Press (Cambridge, 2001)
From the book review by Henrik Jeldtoft Jensen in THE TIMES (Higher Educational Supplement):
"It is a pleasure to read the book. [...] The overall aim is twofold. First, to present the mathematics and physics of lattice-gas models.
Second, to demonstrate, as rigorously as possible, that despite the simplified nature of these models, they nevertheless exhibit the macroscopic behaviour, as described by the Navier-Stokes equations, that is found in real fluids. The authors achieve their aim beautifully with a formal and detailed mathematical treatment. At the same time, they make sure the physical picture is kept clear and used as a guidance throughout their presentation."

J.P. Boon, D. Dab, R. Kapral, and A. Lawniczak, "Reactive Lattice Gas Automata"
Physics Reports, 273, 55-147 (1996)
This article provides the first complete description of the statistical mechanics of reactive lattice gas automata with an in-depth analysis of the microscopic approach and applications to excitable media, oscillatory behavior, chemical chaos and pattern formation.

J.P. Boon and S. Yip, "Molecular Hydrodynamics"
McGraw Hill, New York (1980), reprinted by Dover Publ., New York (1991)
From the book review by J.K. Percus in Physics Today: "There has existed until now no treatment of sufficient depth and breadth to do justice to the topic. Several threads are woven into the text to provide a natural unification. The critical attitude is one of scrupulous impartiality and the literature coverage is impressive."

J.P. Boon and O. Decroly, "Dynamical Systems Theory for Music Dynamics"
Chaos, 5, 501-508 (1995)
John Barrow wrote: ... I enjoyed reading your important paper in Chaos ... Any attempt to investigate the forms of artistic expression through quantitative analysis calls necessarily, in one way or another, for the use of methods developed with scientific techniques, and thereby encounters unavoidably the difficulties inherent to the quantification of art. This article shows that, when music pieces are cast in the form of time series of pitch variations, the concepts and tools of dynamical systems theory can be applied to the analysis of temporal dynamics in music.

P.A. Fleury and J.P. Boon, "Laser Light Scattering in Fluid Systems"
Advances in Chemical Physics, vol.24, 1-93 (1973)
This paper reviews the field of inelastic light scattering from fluid systems and presents 500 entries on the subject. Beyond classical theory, generalized hydrodynamics suggests that at high frequencies, there should be significant departure from classical hydrodynamic behavior in simple fluids. In particular, the frequency dependence of transport coefficients is considered which should introduce observable effects in hyper-sound propagation. Analyzes of Rayleigh-Brillouin spectra measured in liquid Argon and Neon report one of the first experimental investigations of generalized hydrodynamic behavior in simple liquids.