Aperiodic 2006 was the fifth in a now regular series of International Conferences on Aperiodic Crystals, organized under the auspices of the International Union of Crystallography (IUCr) Commission on Aperiodic Crystals. The first such conference, Aperiodic '94, was held in Les Diablerets, Switzerland in 1994 and was itself the successor to a series of Conferences on Modulated Structures, Polytypes and Quasicrystals (MOSPOQ), which were held in Marseilles, France in 1984 followed by Wroclaw, Poland (1986), Varanasi, India (1988) and Balatonszeplak, Hungary (1991). The second Aperiodic Conference took place in Alpe d'Huez, France in 1997 followed by Aperiodic '2000 in Nijmegen, The Netherlands and Aperiodic '03 in Belo Horizonte, Brazil. So Aperiodic '06 was the first of the Aperiodic Conferences to be held in Asia.
Aperiodic 2006 was very ably organized by A.Yamamoto, A.P. Tsai, K.Saitoh, Y.Gotoh, Y.Miyazaki and Y.Michiue to whom the Aperiodic community is indebted for organizing such a stimulating and enjoyable meeting. The Conference Chairpersons were An Pang Tsai and Akiji Yamamoto. A fascinating excursion to the Zao Crater lake and Yamadera Temple was organized during the meeting and much enjoyed by the delegates. At the conference 128 delegates convened from 21 different countries. Over half the delegates were from Asia with 60 coming from Japan. The number of participants was approximately the same as at previous conferences, showing that the field of aperiodic crystallography remains a fascinating and attractive research area. The scientific scope of the Aperiodic conference series was maintained with an impressively broad range of talks given and posters displayed. Mathematicians, theoretical and experimental physicists, chemists, crystallographers and material scientists all made important and diverse contributions. The program began with three tutorals given by Aloysio Janner (on the history of aperiodic crystallography), Lucas Palatinus (on the structure determination of incommensurate phases) and Marc de Boissieu (on the structures and fluctuations of quasicrystal phases) before the impressive program proper commenced. Topics covered ranged all the way from modulated structures in high pressure phases of the elements to Archimidean tiling in block terpolymer systems to the growth of metallic films on quasicrystalline surfaces to pinwheel tilings and anything and everything in between! The program was concluded by Ted Janssen who gave an insightful summary of what we had heard and learnt from the meeting.
The proceedings of Aperiodic 2006 will be published as a special volume in the journal Philosophical Magazine.