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Contact Information

Office:
Olin Hall, 130
Phone: +1-508-831-5334
phillies@wpi.edu

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George D. J. Phillies

George Phillies wears three hats, as Professor in Physics and in the WPI programs in Interactive Media & Game Development and Biochemistry. In his quarter-century at WPI, he has spent most of his time teaching freshman physics, notably mechanics and harmonic oscillations. For many years, he taught statistical mechanics, primarily to undergraduates, based on his textbook Elementary Lectures in Statistical Mechanics. For the Interactive Media and Game Design program, he created a nationally unique course on designing board games. That included coauthoring its two textbooks: Designing Modern Strategy Games and Modern Perspectives in Game Design. His new book Phenomenology of Polymer Solution Dynamics has been presented as a lecture course. You can watch Phillies' Game Design, Polymer, and Statistical Mechanics lectures on YouTube on the GeorgePhillies channel.

Phillies' research on statistical mechanics emphasizes applying underused mathematical results to reveal novel truths. He used the positive-function renormalization group to obtain an explicit derivation of the universal scaling equation for polymer solution self-diffusion. He extended the renormalization ansatz to time-dependent phenomena, finding for the first time a systematic description and parameterization of the frequency dependences of dynamic moduli and dielectric relaxation in polymer solutions. Phillies again used spherical harmonic expansions in molecular dynamics calculations, revealing the hitherto-unrecognized presence of septahedral ordering in Lennard-Jones fluids approaching the glass. These calculations also gave significant direct evidence for the validity of the Kivelson glass model.

Phillies' ongoing research in game design is supported by his private collection of board wargames, which is the largest in the world. He is now working on two new books on game design and game tactical analysis. In his spare time, Phillies writes novels and participates in politics. He has twice run for Federal elective office.

Research Interests

  • Statistical Mechanics
  • Polymer Dynamics
  • Game Design

Education

  • BS, Physics, MIT, 1969
  • BS, Life Sciences, MIT, 1969
  • MS, Physics, MIT, 1971
  • DSc, Physics, MIT, 1973

Featured Publications

  • G.D.J. Phillies. Phenomenology of Polymer Solution Dynamics, Cambridge U.P. (2011).
  • G.D.J. Phillies. Complete Numerical Tables to Phenomenology of Polymer Solution Dynamics, Third Millennium (2011).
  • G.D.J. Phillies. Elementary Lectures in Statistical Mechanics, Springer-Verlag (2000).
  • G. D. J. Phillies. “Derivation of the Universal Scaling Equation of the Hydrodynamic Scaling Model via Renormalization Group Analysis,'' Macromolecules, 31 , 2317-2327 (1998).
  • George D. J. Phillies. "Polymer Segmental Cross-Correlations from Dielectric Relaxation Spectra of Block Copolymers," Physical Review E, 84 011807 (1-4) (2011).

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