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  1. Plasticity theory aims at describing the yield loci and work hardening of a material under general deformation states. Most of its complexity arises from the nontrivial dependence of the yield loci on the complete strain history of a material and its microstructure. This motivated 3 ingenious simplifications that underpinned a century of developments in this field: 1) yield criteria describing yield loci location; 2) associative or nonassociative flow rules defining the direction of plastic flow; and 3) effective stress–strain laws consistent with the plastic work equivalence principle. However, 2 key complications arise from these simplifications. First, finding equations that describemore »these 3 assumptions for materials with complex microstructures is not trivial. Second, yield surface evolution needs to be traced iteratively, i.e., through a return mapping algorithm. Here, we show that these assumptions are not needed in the context of sequence learning when using recurrent neural networks, diverting the above-mentioned complications. This work offers an alternative to currently established plasticity formulations by providing the foundations for finding history- and microstructure-dependent constitutive models through deep learning.« less
  2. Photosynthesis is a highly optimized process from which valuable lessons can be learned about the operating principles in nature. Its primary steps involve energy transport operating near theoretical quantum limits in efficiency. Recently, extensive research was motivated by the hypothesis that nature used quantum coherences to direct energy transfer. This body of work, a cornerstone for the field of quantum biology, rests on the interpretation of small-amplitude oscillations in two-dimensional electronic spectra of photosynthetic complexes. This Review discusses recent work reexamining these claims and demonstrates that inter-exciton coherences are too short lived to have any functional significance in photosynthetic energymore »transfer. Instead, the observed long-lived coherences originate from impulsively excited vibrations, generally observed in femtosecond spectroscopy. These efforts, collectively, lead to a more detailed understanding of the quantum aspects of dissipation. Nature, rather than trying to avoid dissipation, exploits it via engineering of exciton-bath interaction to create efficient energy flow.« less