Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

LSU Professor Works With International Researchers to Make Quantum Physics Discovery

31.07.2007
John F. DiTusa, professor of physics and astronomy at LSU, and his international colleagues have discovered an unusual magnetic material that behaves very differently from the average refrigerator magnet.

He recently co-authored an article with researchers from around the world, titled, “Mesoscopic Phase Coherence in a Quantum Spin Fluid.” Their findings will be published in the July 26 edition of the prestigious Science magazine.

The results of their research have strong implications for the design of devices and materials for quantum information processing.

The group’s main goal was to demonstrate string order – also called quantum phase coherence – and to determine the factors affecting the ability to maintain this property over a finite distance. In order to investigate this, DiTusa, together with an international team of researchers, looked at a quantum spin liquid, a system where electron spins are coupled, but point in random directions. These spins can be thought of as atomic-sized bar magnets that point in random arrangements, which is in direct contrast to the behavior of household magnets, where the spins are mostly aligned. The material in which they discovered the quantum spin liquid is composed of chains of nickel-oxygen-nickel atoms.

The group found that the string order was maintained for relatively long distances, nearly 30 nanometers, or 100 times the distance between nickel atoms in the solid state, at temperatures close to absolute zero.

“I like to think of this novel state of matter as an orchestra without a conductor, each musician playing whatever comes to mind,” said DiTusa. “Though one trumpet player likes to play Jimmie Hendrix and an oboe player likes to play Bach, a miraculous occurrence takes place and, without realizing it, the entire room of musicians becomes locked into playing a Brahms symphony.”

In this case, DiTusa contends, the whole orchestra is acting as a single coherent entity, even though they are playing different parts of a nonexistent score. This coherence has a length scale of the size of the concert hall and lasts a time determined by the length of the symphony.

“In our nickel oxide magnet, although the individual nickel atoms don’t have spins that point all in the same direction, or even form a regularly repeating pattern, they all hang together to make a beautiful, coherent symphony,” he said.

Collaborators on this research include: Guangyong Xu of Johns Hopkins University and Brookhaven National Laboratory; Collin L. Broholm, Ying Chen and Michel Kenzelmann of Johns Hopkins University and the National Institute of Standards and Technology Center for Neutron Research; Yeong-Ah Soh of Dartmouth College; Gabriel Aeppli of the London Centre for Nanotechnology and University College of London; Christopher D. Frost from the ISIS Facility, Rutherford Appleton Laboratory, U.K.; Toshimitsu Ito and Kunihiko Oka of the National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology, or AIST, in Japan; and Hidenori Takagi, also from AIST and the University of Tokyo.

For more information, contact DiTusa at ditusa@phys.lsu.edu or 225-578-2606.

John F. DiTusa | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.phys.lsu.edu

More articles from Physics and Astronomy:

nachricht Smooth propagation of spin waves using gold
26.06.2017 | Toyohashi University of Technology

nachricht A 100-year-old physics problem has been solved at EPFL
23.06.2017 | Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne

All articles from Physics and Astronomy >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Can we see monkeys from space? Emerging technologies to map biodiversity

An international team of scientists has proposed a new multi-disciplinary approach in which an array of new technologies will allow us to map biodiversity and the risks that wildlife is facing at the scale of whole landscapes. The findings are published in Nature Ecology and Evolution. This international research is led by the Kunming Institute of Zoology from China, University of East Anglia, University of Leicester and the Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research.

Using a combination of satellite and ground data, the team proposes that it is now possible to map biodiversity with an accuracy that has not been previously...

Im Focus: Climate satellite: Tracking methane with robust laser technology

Heatwaves in the Arctic, longer periods of vegetation in Europe, severe floods in West Africa – starting in 2021, scientists want to explore the emissions of the greenhouse gas methane with the German-French satellite MERLIN. This is made possible by a new robust laser system of the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT in Aachen, which achieves unprecedented measurement accuracy.

Methane is primarily the result of the decomposition of organic matter. The gas has a 25 times greater warming potential than carbon dioxide, but is not as...

Im Focus: How protons move through a fuel cell

Hydrogen is regarded as the energy source of the future: It is produced with solar power and can be used to generate heat and electricity in fuel cells. Empa researchers have now succeeded in decoding the movement of hydrogen ions in crystals – a key step towards more efficient energy conversion in the hydrogen industry of tomorrow.

As charge carriers, electrons and ions play the leading role in electrochemical energy storage devices and converters such as batteries and fuel cells. Proton...

Im Focus: A unique data centre for cosmological simulations

Scientists from the Excellence Cluster Universe at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität Munich have establised "Cosmowebportal", a unique data centre for cosmological simulations located at the Leibniz Supercomputing Centre (LRZ) of the Bavarian Academy of Sciences. The complete results of a series of large hydrodynamical cosmological simulations are available, with data volumes typically exceeding several hundred terabytes. Scientists worldwide can interactively explore these complex simulations via a web interface and directly access the results.

With current telescopes, scientists can observe our Universe’s galaxies and galaxy clusters and their distribution along an invisible cosmic web. From the...

Im Focus: Scientists develop molecular thermometer for contactless measurement using infrared light

Temperature measurements possible even on the smallest scale / Molecular ruby for use in material sciences, biology, and medicine

Chemists at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (JGU) in cooperation with researchers of the German Federal Institute for Materials Research and Testing (BAM)...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Plants are networkers

19.06.2017 | Event News

Digital Survival Training for Executives

13.06.2017 | Event News

Global Learning Council Summit 2017

13.06.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Study shines light on brain cells that coordinate movement

26.06.2017 | Life Sciences

Smooth propagation of spin waves using gold

26.06.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Switchable DNA mini-machines store information

26.06.2017 | Information Technology

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>