Nanotechnology Now







Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button


DHgate

Home > Press > Physicists localize 3-D matter waves for first time

Photo by
L. Brian Stauffer

An illustration of Anderson localization. The green balloons represent disordered barriers that localize the sound of the trumpet at its source.
Photo by L. Brian Stauffer

An illustration of Anderson localization. The green balloons represent disordered barriers that localize the sound of the trumpet at its source.

Abstract:
University of Illinois physicists have experimentally demonstrated for the first time how three-dimensional conduction is affected by the defects that plague materials. Understanding these effects is important for many electronics applications.

Physicists localize 3-D matter waves for first time

Champaign, IL | Posted on October 7th, 2011

Led by physics professor Brian DeMarco, the researchers achieved complete localization of quantum matter waves in three dimensions, first theorized roughly half a century ago. The group published its findings in the Oct. 7 issue of the journal Science.

Defects in materials are inevitable, but their effects are poorly understood. Understanding how disorder in a material affects waves traveling through it has implications for many applications, including ultrasonic waves in medical imaging, lasers for imaging and sensing, and electron waves for electronics and superconductors.

"The physics behind disorder is fundamental to understanding the impact of unavoidable material imperfections on these kinds of applications," DeMarco said.

Scientists have long theorized, but never observed, that strong disorder causing interference on all sides can trap a matter wave in one place, a phenomenon known as Anderson localization.

According to DeMarco, this is analogous to a trumpeter playing in a concert hall filled with randomly placed barriers that reflect sound waves. Instead of traveling in all directions, the sound stays at its source, never propagating outward because of destructive interference.

"The result? Perfect silence everywhere in the concert hall. The trumpeter blows into his instrument, but the sound never leaves the trumpet," DeMarco said. "That's exactly the case in our experiment, although we use quantum matter waves instead of sound, and the barriers are created using a speckled green laser beam."

To simulate electrons moving in waves through a metal, DeMarco's group uses ultra-cold atoms moving as matter waves in a disordered laser beam. Using laser light as an analogy for a material allows the researchers to completely characterize and control the disorder - a feat impossible in solids, which has made understanding and testing theories of Anderson localization difficult.
The researchers demonstrated that the laser light could completely localize the atoms - the first direct observation of three-dimensional Anderson localization of matter.

"This means that we can study Anderson localization in a way that is relevant to materials," DeMarco said. "Now, theories of Anderson localization in 3-D can be compared to our ‘material' and tested for the first time."

The team also measured the energy a particle needs to escape localization, known as the mobility edge. Waves with energy higher than the mobility edge are free to propagate throughout the disorder, but waves with energy lower than the mobility edge are completely localized - even when there is a path through the barriers.

By tuning the power of the speckled green laser beam, the researchers measured the relationship between the mobility edge and disorder strength. They found that as disorder increased, so did the mobility edge, meaning that materials with high concentrations of defects induce more localization.

DeMarco hopes to use the quantum-matter analogues to better understand and manipulate materials.

Eventually, he plans to use his measurements of Anderson localization and the mobility edge along with future work exploring other parameters to engineer materials to better perform specific applications - in particular, high-temperature superconductors.

"Comparing measurements on a solid to theory are complicated by our lack of knowledge of the disorder in the solid and our inability to remove it," DeMarco said. "But, that's exactly what we can do with our experiment, and what makes it so powerful and exciting."

The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, the Office of Naval Research and the National Science Foundation supported this work.

####

For more information, please click here

Contacts:
Liz Ahlberg
Physical Sciences Editor
217-244-1073


Brian DeMarco
217-244-9848

Copyright © University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

If you have a comment, please Contact us.

Issuers of news releases, not 7th Wave, Inc. or Nanotechnology Now, are solely responsible for the accuracy of the content.

Bookmark:
Delicious Digg Newsvine Google Yahoo Reddit Magnoliacom Furl Facebook

Related Links

The paper, “Three-Dimensional Anderson Localization of Ultracold Matter,” is available online:

Related News Press

News and information

Get ready for NanoDays! March 5th, 2015

American Chemical Society Presidential Symposia: nanoscience, international chemistry March 5th, 2015

CiQUS researchers obtain high-quality perovskites over large areas by a chemical method March 4th, 2015

Arrowhead to Present at 2015 Barclays Global Healthcare Conference March 4th, 2015

Superconductivity

Strength in numbers: Researchers develop the first-ever quantum device that detects and corrects its own errors March 4th, 2015

CiQUS researchers obtain high-quality perovskites over large areas by a chemical method March 4th, 2015

Physics

Breakthrough in OLED technology March 2nd, 2015

Forbidden quantum leaps possible with high-res spectroscopy March 2nd, 2015

Moving molecule writes letters: Caging of molecules allows investigation of equilibrium thermodynamics February 27th, 2015

Real-time observation of bond formation by using femtosecond X-ray liquidography February 26th, 2015

Govt.-Legislation/Regulation/Funding/Policy

New research could lead to more efficient electrical energy storage March 4th, 2015

Energy-generating cloth could replace batteries in wearable devices March 4th, 2015

The taming of magnetic vortices: Unified theory for skyrmion-materials March 3rd, 2015

Black phosphorus is new 'wonder material' for improving optical communication March 3rd, 2015

Chip Technology

Experiment and theory unite at last in debate over microbial nanowires: New model and experiments settle debate over metallic-like conductivity of microbial nanowires in bacterium March 4th, 2015

Magnetic vortices in nanodisks reveal information: Researchers from Dresden and Jülich use microwaves to read out information from smallest storage devices March 4th, 2015

Cambrios and Heraeus Jointly Create New, High-Conductivity Transparent Conductors: Two Companies' Combined Products Dramatically Extend Flexible Substrate Capabilities for Next-Generation Mass-Market Technology Products March 3rd, 2015

The taming of magnetic vortices: Unified theory for skyrmion-materials March 3rd, 2015

Discoveries

American Chemical Society Presidential Symposia: nanoscience, international chemistry March 5th, 2015

Experiment and theory unite at last in debate over microbial nanowires: New model and experiments settle debate over metallic-like conductivity of microbial nanowires in bacterium March 4th, 2015

Magnetic vortices in nanodisks reveal information: Researchers from Dresden and Jülich use microwaves to read out information from smallest storage devices March 4th, 2015

CiQUS researchers obtain high-quality perovskites over large areas by a chemical method March 4th, 2015

Announcements

Get ready for NanoDays! March 5th, 2015

American Chemical Society Presidential Symposia: nanoscience, international chemistry March 5th, 2015

CiQUS researchers obtain high-quality perovskites over large areas by a chemical method March 4th, 2015

Arrowhead to Present at 2015 Barclays Global Healthcare Conference March 4th, 2015

Military

Black phosphorus is new 'wonder material' for improving optical communication March 3rd, 2015

Researchers turn unzipped nanotubes into possible alternative for platinum: Aerogel catalyst shows promise for fuel cells March 2nd, 2015

Simulating superconducting materials with ultracold atoms: Rice physicists build superconductor analog, observe antiferromagnetic order February 23rd, 2015

New nanogel for drug delivery: Self-healing gel can be injected into the body and act as a long-term drug depot February 19th, 2015

Quantum nanoscience

Important step towards quantum computing: Metals at atomic scale March 2nd, 2015

Quantum many-body systems on the way back to equilibrium: Advances in experimental and theoretical physics enable a deeper understanding of the dynamics and properties of quantum many-body systems February 25th, 2015

Quantum research past, present and future for discussion at AAAS February 16th, 2015

Exotic states materialize with supercomputers February 12th, 2015

NanoNews-Digest
The latest news from around the world, FREE




  Premium Products
NanoNews-Custom
Only the news you want to read!
 Learn More
NanoTech-Transfer
University Technology Transfer & Patents
 Learn More
NanoStrategies
Full-service, expert consulting
 Learn More










ASP
Nanotechnology Now Featured Books




NNN

The Hunger Project







© Copyright 1999-2015 7th Wave, Inc. All Rights Reserved PRIVACY POLICY :: CONTACT US :: STATS :: SITE MAP :: ADVERTISE