Overview, Topics, Goals & Logos


The purpose of the yearly International Conference on Nonlinear Elasticity in Materials (ICNEM) is to promote understanding regarding the elastic nonlinear behavior of solids. The primary manifestations of the behavior are characteristic wave distortion, and slow dynamics, a recovery process to equilibrium that takes place linearly with the logarithm of time, over hours to days after a wave disturbance. The link between the diverse materials that exhibit nonequilibrium dynamics appears to be the presence of soft regions, thought to be primarily 'damage' at many scales, ranging from order 10^-9 m to 10^-1 m at least. The regions of soft matter may be distributed as in a rock sample, or isolated, as in a sample with a single crack.

The precise physical origin of the behavior is clear in some cases such as granular media where the source of the nonequilibrium dynamics, grain-to-grain interaction, is well understood. In other materials, it appears that the origin must be due fundamentally to shear sliding, related to crack and possibly dislocation dynamics, as well as less clear origins. Because the physical origins of the behavior are related to damage, damage diagnostics in solids, nonlinear destructive evaluation follows naturally. Nonequilibrium dynamics also plays a significant role in other areas such as earthquake strong ground motion and potentially to earthquake dynamics.

The ICNEM is focused on a class of materials that exhibit nonlinear elastic behavior including nonlinear stress-strain relationships, nonequilibrium dynamics, discrete memory, and hysteresis. A vast number of materials fall into this class: e.g., rocks, concrete, damage solids, unconsolidated granular media, bones, and wood. The conference is of fundamental importance to develop new theoretical descriptions of nonlinear elasticity and to developing applications. To date, applications include faulting and tectonics, non-destructive evaluation of materials, granular physics inducing fault zones and avalanche, and to porous media uptake of fluid. There is no other scientific meeting in existence that unifies these topics in this manner. We intend to bring together internationally recognized scientists who will present newest developments in this field but also students, post-doc, and junior researchers who will experience a crash course on this topic.

Steering Committee
Jan Kober (IT CAS, CZ)
Marco Scalerandi (Politecnico di Torino, IT)
Koen Van Den Abeele (KU Leuven, BE)
Paul Johnson (US)

​General Topic

The general topic of ICNEM is the elastic nonlinear behavior of solids and soft matter. The conference focuses on both basic research and applications in this area and represents the state of the art in this domain. This is the only conference of its kind.


Primary objectives are to offer a forum for presenting the state of the art in this domain, and to spark collaboration with the goal of progressing more rapidly on the various topics.

Key Topics
Elastic nonlinear behavior of Earth materials, industrial materials and granular media in general.
Advancements in theoretical approaches.
Elastic nonlinear behavior in medicine.
Applications of nonlinear elasticity to nondestructive evaluation of materials.
Time reverse acoustics as it applies to probing the elastic nonlinear behavior of materials.
The role of elastic nonlinear behavior in slip/avalanche physics and triggering of slip by nonlinear acoustical waves.
Characterization of nonlinear material properties.
Modeling and simulation of nonlinear elasticity.
Earthquakes and geophysics

The primary scientific impacts are to spark new ideas and collaborations amongst participants and jointly to develop new ideas for applications and for basic research.

Additionally, the ICNEM's intent is to present the state of the art to new and returning participants.

Logos are stored here for use by members.