Physicists have reported that they have finally observed helium 3 existing in a long-predicted type of superfluid, called the ß phase. This is an important discovery, if it’s borne out, for reasons that partly have to do with its isotope, helium 4. Helium 4 is a fascinating substance because the helium 4 atom is a boson –…… Continue reading Physicists observe long-expected helium superfluid phase
There are many types of superconductors. Some of them can be explained by an early theory of superconductivity called Bardeen-Cooper-Schrieffer (BCS) theory. In these materials, vibrations in the atomic lattice force the electrons in the material to overcome their mutual repulsion and team up in pairs, if the material’s temperature is below a particular threshold…… Continue reading A tale of vortices, skyrmions, paths and shapes
On June 24, a press release from CERN said that scientists and engineers working on upgrading the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) had “built and operated … the most powerful electrical transmission line … to date”. The transmission line consisted of four cables – two capable of transporting 20 kA of current and two, 7 kA.…… Continue reading The awesome limits of superconductors
It’s fun to think about the implications of a film’s antagonists being modelled after a phenomenon I’ve often read/written about but never thought about that way.
The Wire July 18, 2015 Particle physics is an obscure subject for most people but everyone sat up and took notice when the Large Hadron Collider discovered the particle named after Peter Higgs in 2012. The Higgs boson propelled his name to the front pages of newspapers that until then hadn’t bothered about the differences between bosons and…… Continue reading Yoichiro Nambu, the silent revolutionary of particle physics, is dead
(This post is continued from this one.) After a bit of searching on Wikipedia, I found that the fundamental philosophical underpinnings of superconductivity were to be found in a statistical concept called the Feshbach resonance. If I had to teach superconductivity to those who only knew of the phenomenon superfluously, that’s where I’d begin. So.…… Continue reading Superconductivity: From Feshbach to Fermi