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|Quantum particles moving in one dimension behave collectively like cars in a traffic jam. One moves if all the others agree to do so.|
Miguel A. Cazalilla, a scientist at the CFM (a joint CSIC-UPV/EHU center) and the Donostia International Physics Center (DIPC), together with other four colleagues from various institutions in Europe and the United States, was recently invited to write a review article that has been just published in the prestigious journal Reviews of Modern Physics of the American Physical Society, where only leading scientists in their field of physics are invited to contribute. The article, "One dimensional Bosons: From Condensed Matter to Ultracold Atoms", offers a glimpse into the recent progress in the field of one dimensional quantum many-particle physics.
Understanding the properties of matter confined in narrow channels is becoming more and more necessary as the size of elements of microchips is pushed towards the limits of miniaturization by the electronics industry. In the future, the properties of electronic devices, as well as the wires connecting them, will be strongly affected by quantum effects. The field of one dimensional quantum many-particle physics has recently moved from speculative theory to experimental evidence thanks to our capabilities to manipulate matter at the nanoscale.
When matter is forced to move essentially in a line, new kinds of collective phenomena emerge. For quantum particles, it is like being trapped in a traffic jam or queuing for movie tickets, in order to move (forward or backward) everyone must agree to do so. Thus, quantum particles like bosons, also stand in line!
Dr. Cazalilla's approach to the subject is based mainly on quantum field theory, a powerful tool that has been very successful in describing the world at the highest energy scales (those found in particle accelerators such as LHC), but also the properties of the many possible phases of matter forced to move in reduced dimensions.
Reviews of Modern Physics of the American Physical Society journal is ranked fourth in the Journal Citation Report 2010 Science Edition with an impact factor 1.5 times higher than the well known journal Nature. Only leading scientists in their fields are invited to contribute to this journal, and thus, the publication of this review it is a recognition of the excellence of Dr. Cazalilla's work.
For those who are interested in the topic, a summary in layman's language can be found in additional information.
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