Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Electrons go with the flow

10.10.2018

You turn on a switch and the light switches on because electricity "flows". The usual perception is that this is like opening a faucet and the water starts to flow. But this analogy is misleading. The flow of water is determined by the theory of hydrodynamics, where the behavior of the fluid requires no knowledge of the movements of individual molecules.

However, electric currents in solids are formed by electrons. In metals, the electrons do not collide with each other, but they scatter with lattice defects. In conventional materials, the movement of electrons is therefore more akin to the motion of balls in a pinball machine.


Electrons go with the flow

Johannes Gooth

Hydrodynamic electron flow can only be observed in high-purity quantum materials. An international team of members from the IBM Research Laboratory Zurich, the University of Hamburg and the Max Planck Institute for Chemical Physics of Solids has now found signatures of electron hydrodynamics in the semimetal tungsten diphosphide.

The results were published in the journal Nature Communications. On closer inspection, it could be shown that the hydrodynamic behavior of the electrons is rooted in the strongly interacting quantum nature of the electron system.

In addition, it is surprising that these observations are consistent with mathematical techniques derived from string theory.

These techniques have been used to describe strongly interacting forms of quantum matter and predict that the conversion of any form of energy into thermal energy is fundamentally limited by quantum mechanics.

The experiments were made possible by the progress in the development of new materials and nanofabrication techniques.

Wissenschaftliche Ansprechpartner:

Johannes Gooth

Originalpublikation:

Nature Communications (“Electrical and thermal signatures of a hydrodynamic electron system in tungsten diphosphide”)
DOI https://doi.org/10.1038/s41467-018-06688-y

Dipl.-Übers. Ingrid Rothe | Max-Planck-Institut für Chemische Physik fester Stoffe
Further information:
https://www.cpfs.mpg.de

More articles from Materials Sciences:

nachricht A remote control for neurons
04.06.2020 | College of Engineering, Carnegie Mellon University

nachricht Smart textiles made possible by flexible transmission lines
03.06.2020 | Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne

All articles from Materials Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: Restoring vision by gene therapy

Latest scientific findings give hope for people with incurable retinal degeneration

Humans rely dominantly on their eyesight. Losing vision means not being able to read, recognize faces or find objects. Macular degeneration is one of the major...

Im Focus: Small Protein, Big Impact

In meningococci, the RNA-binding protein ProQ plays a major role. Together with RNA molecules, it regulates processes that are important for pathogenic properties of the bacteria.

Meningococci are bacteria that can cause life-threatening meningitis and sepsis. These pathogens use a small protein with a large impact: The RNA-binding...

Im Focus: K-State study reveals asymmetry in spin directions of galaxies

Research also suggests the early universe could have been spinning

An analysis of more than 200,000 spiral galaxies has revealed unexpected links between spin directions of galaxies, and the structure formed by these links...

Im Focus: New measurement exacerbates old problem

Two prominent X-ray emission lines of highly charged iron have puzzled astrophysicists for decades: their measured and calculated brightness ratios always disagree. This hinders good determinations of plasma temperatures and densities. New, careful high-precision measurements, together with top-level calculations now exclude all hitherto proposed explanations for this discrepancy, and thus deepen the problem.

Hot astrophysical plasmas fill the intergalactic space, and brightly shine in stellar coronae, active galactic nuclei, and supernova remnants. They contain...

Im Focus: Biotechnology: Triggered by light, a novel way to switch on an enzyme

In living cells, enzymes drive biochemical metabolic processes enabling reactions to take place efficiently. It is this very ability which allows them to be used as catalysts in biotechnology, for example to create chemical products such as pharmaceutics. Researchers now identified an enzyme that, when illuminated with blue light, becomes catalytically active and initiates a reaction that was previously unknown in enzymatics. The study was published in "Nature Communications".

Enzymes: they are the central drivers for biochemical metabolic processes in every living cell, enabling reactions to take place efficiently. It is this very...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Dresden Nexus Conference 2020: Same Time, Virtual Format, Registration Opened

19.05.2020 | Event News

Aachen Machine Tool Colloquium AWK'21 will take place on June 10 and 11, 2021

07.04.2020 | Event News

International Coral Reef Symposium in Bremen Postponed by a Year

06.04.2020 | Event News

 
Latest News

New image of a cancer-related enzyme in action helps explain gene regulation

05.06.2020 | Life Sciences

Silicon 'neurons' may add a new dimension to computer processors

05.06.2020 | Physics and Astronomy

Protecting the Neuronal Architecture

05.06.2020 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>