Simulations reveal exotic quantum phase transitions in optically trapped superfluid atoms

Phase transitions between different states of matter are normally driven by random thermal motions of atoms. However, when phase transitions occur at temperatures approaching absolute zero, quantum mechanical fluctuations begin to take over, sometimes with extraordinary results. Yasuyuki Kato from the RIKEN Center for Emergent Matter Science and other RIKEN colleagues have now computationally uncovered ‘tricritical’ transition points that help explain the quantum phase transition in superfluid-to-insulator systems.

from Phys.org: Physics News http://ift.tt/1gVqgRt

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