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IUCr 1994 Report - Commission on Aperiodic Crystals

Most of the efforts of this Commission were dedicated to organizing the Conference Aperiodic'94, which was held 18-22 September in Les Diablerets, Switzerland. According to its Terms of Reference, the Commission is to actively promote the organization of this series of Conferences on a triennial basis. All the members of the Commission acted as the Programme Committee and thus contributed to the success of the Conference by selecting a very high level of invited speakers and by a careful choice of abstracts. The Programme Committee took great care to ensure the interdisciplinary character of the Conference by maintaining a balance between quasicrystal, incommensurate and composite crystal, and polytype specialists. A full report of the Conference has been published elsewhere [IUCr Newsletter (1995), Vol. 3]. The Conference organizers took full advantage of the possibilities offered by the World Wide Web (WWW) by making the abstracts available first to the Programme Committee and then to interested scientists. All the Conference information, including the programme, were available on Internet well in advance of the Conference. This was the first Meeting sponsored by the IUCr to operate within the frame of the WWW and the experiences gathered by the Committee could be transmitted to future Meeting organizers.

The next Meeting, Aperiodic'97, will be organized by our French colleagues and will take place in the Grenoble area. The Commission was also very active in coordinating other Meetings in the field of aperiodic crystals, namely the International School on Quasicrystals in Balatonfüred and the 5th International Conference on Quasicrystals in Avignon (both in May 1995). In particular, the Commission supported the organizers in their efforts to obtain financial help from the Executive Committee of the IUCr.

Following the establishment in 1993 of a checklist for the description of incommensurately modulated structures by the Commission, the CIF Dictionary for modulated structures is now being considered for approval by COMCIFS (the CIF Management Committee). In addition to the structure descriptors fulfilling the checklist, additional items concerning composite crystals have been considered. The Commission is further pursuing its work on this matter.

Contacts have been established with the IUCr Commission on International Tables regarding the possible inclusion of material concerning quasicrystals. This topic will continue to be studied by the two Commissions.

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