Weyl and Dirac semimetals are three-dimensional phases of matter with gapless electronic excitations that are protected by topology and symmetry. As three-dimensional analogs of graphene, they have generated much recent interest. Deep connections exist with particle physics models of relativistic chiral fermions, and, despite their gaplessness, to solid-state topological and Chern insulators. Their characteristic electronic properties lead to protected surface states and novel responses to applied electric and magnetic fields. The theoretical foundations of these phases, their proposed realizations in solid-state systems, and recent experiments on candidate materials as well as their relation to other states of matter are reviewed.
The coherent superposition of states, in combination with the quantization of observables, represents one of the most fundamental features that mark the departure of quantum mechanics from the classical realm. Quantum coherence in many-body systems embodies the essence of entanglement and is an essential ingredient for a plethora of physical phenomena in quantum optics, quantum information, solid state physics, and nanoscale thermodynamics. In recent years, research on the presence and functional role of quantum coherence in biological systems has also attracted considerable interest. Despite the fundamental importance of quantum coherence, the development of a rigorous theory of quantum coherence as a physical resource has been initiated only recently. This Colloquium discusses and reviews the development of this rapidly growing research field that encompasses the characterization, quantification, manipulation, dynamical evolution, and operational application of quantum coherence.
"Quantum sensing" describes the use of a quantum system, quantum properties, or quantum phenomena to perform a measurement of a physical quantity. Historical examples of quantum sensors include magnetometers based on superconducting quantum interference devices and atomic vapors or atomic clocks. More recently, quantum sensing has become a distinct and rapidly growing branch of research within the area of quantum science and technology, with the most common platforms being spin qubits, trapped ions, and flux qubits. The field is expected to provide new opportunities-especially with regard to high sensitivity and precision-in applied physics and other areas of science. This review provides an introduction to the basic principles, methods, and concepts of quantum sensing from the viewpoint of the interested experimentalist.
Open quantum systems (OQSs) cannot always be described with the Markov approximation, which requires a large separation of system and environment time scales. An overview is given of some of the most important techniques available to tackle the dynamics of an OQS beyond the Markov approximation. Some of these techniques, such as master equations, Heisenberg equations, and stochastic methods, are based on solving the reduced OQS dynamics, while others, such as path integral Monte Carlo or chain mapping approaches, are based on solving the dynamics of the full system. The physical interpretation and derivation of the various approaches are emphasized, how they are connected is explored, and how different methods may be suitable for solving different problems is examined.
Time-periodic forcing in the form of coherent radiation is a standard tool for the coherent manipulation of small quantum systems like single atoms. In the last years, periodic driving has more and more also been considered as a means for the coherent control of many-body systems. In particular, experiments with ultracold quantum gases in optical lattices subjected to periodic driving in the lower kilohertz regime have attracted much attention. Milestones include the observation of dynamic localization, the dynamic control of the quantum phase transition between a bosonic superfluid and a Mott insulator, as well as the dynamic creation of strong artificial magnetic fields and topological band structures. This Colloquium reviews these recent experiments and their theoretical description. Moreover, fundamental properties of periodically driven many-body systems are discussed within the framework of Floquet theory, including heating, relaxation dynamics, anomalous topological edge states, and the response to slow parameter variations.
This is an introductory review of the physics of quantum spin liquid states. Quantum magnetism is a rapidly evolving field, and recent developments reveal that the ground states and low-energy physics of frustrated spin systems may develop many exotic behaviors once we leave the regime of semiclassical approaches. The purpose of this article is to introduce these developments. The article begins by explaining how semiclassical approaches fail once quantum mechanics become important and then describe the alternative approaches for addressing the problem. Mainly spin-1/2 systems are discussed, and most of the time is spent in this article on one particular set of plausible spin liquid states in which spins are represented by fermions. These states are spin-singlet states and may be viewed as an extension of Fermi liquid states to Mott insulators, and they are usually classified in the category of so-called SU(2), U(1), or Z(2) spin liquid states. A review is given of the basic theory regarding these states and the extensions of these states to include the effect of spin-orbit coupling and to higher spin (S > 1/2) systems. Two other important approaches with strong influences on the understanding of spin liquid states are also introduced: (i) matrix product states and projected entangled pair states and (ii) the Kitaev honeycomb model. Experimental progress concerning spin liquid states in realistic materials, including anisotropic triangular-lattice systems [kappa-(ET)(2)Cu-2(CN)(3) and EtMe3Sb[Pd(dmit)(2)](2)], kagome-lattice system [ZnCu3(OH)(6)Cl-2], and hyperkagome lattice system (Na4Ir3O8), is reviewed and compared against the corresponding theories.
This article reviews the theory of electron-phonon interactions in solids from the point of view of ab initio calculations. While the electron-phonon interaction has been studied for almost a century, predictive nonempirical calculations have become feasible only during the past two decades. Today it is possible to calculate from first principles many materials properties related to the electron-phonon interaction, including the critical temperature of conventional superconductors, the carrier mobility in semiconductors, the temperature dependence of optical spectra in direct and indirect-gap semiconductors, the relaxation rates of photoexcited carriers, the electron mass renormalization in angle-resolved photoelectron spectra, and the nonadiabatic corrections to phonon dispersion relations. In this article a review of the theoretical and computational framework underlying modern electron-phonon calculations from first principles as well as landmark investigations of the electron-phonon interaction in real materials is given. The first part of the article summarizes the elementary theory of electron-phonon interactions and their calculations based on density-functional theory. The second part discusses a general field-theoretic formulation of the electron-phonon problem and establishes the connection with practical first-principles calculations. The third part reviews a number of recent investigations of electron-phonon interactions in the areas of vibrational spectroscopy, photoelectron spectroscopy, optical spectroscopy, transport, and superconductivity.
This article reviews static and dynamic interfacial effects in magnetism, focusing on interfacially driven magnetic effects and phenomena associated with spin-orbit coupling and intrinsic symmetry breaking at interfaces. It provides a historical background and literature survey, but focuses on recent progress, identifying the most exciting new scientific results and pointing to promising future research directions. It starts with an introduction and overview of how basic magnetic properties are affected by interfaces, then turns to a discussion of charge and spin transport through and near interfaces and how these can be used to control the properties of the magnetic layer. Important concepts include spin accumulation, spin currents, spin-transfer torque, and spin pumping. An overview is provided to the current state of knowledge and existing review literature on interfacial effects such as exchange bias, exchange-spring magnets, the spin Hall effect, oxide heterostructures, and topological insulators. The article highlights recent discoveries of interface-induced magnetism and noncollinear spin textures, nonlinear dynamics including spin-transfer torque and magnetization reversal induced by interfaces, and interfacial effects in ultrafast magnetization processes.
A review is given of various theoretical approaches for the equation of state (EoS) of dense matter, relevant for the description of core-collapse supernovae, compact stars, and compact star mergers. The emphasis is put on models that are applicable to all of these scenarios. Such EoS models have to cover large ranges in baryon number density, temperature, and isospin asymmetry. The characteristics of matter change dramatically within these ranges, from a mixture of nucleons, nuclei, and electrons to uniform, strongly interacting matter containing nucleons, and possibly other particles such as hyperons or quarks. As the development of an EoS requires joint efforts from many directions, different theoretical approaches are considered and relevant experimental and observational constraints which provide insights for future research are discussed. Finally, results from applications of the discussed EoS models are summarized.
A large number of experimental discoveries especially in the heavy quarkonium sector that did not meet the expectations of the until then very successful quark model led to a renaissance of hadron spectroscopy. Among various explanations of the internal structure of these excitations, hadronic molecules, being analogs of light nuclei, play a unique role since for those predictions can be made with controlled uncertainty. Experimental evidence of various candidates of hadronic molecules and methods of identifying such structures are reviewed. Nonrelativistic effective field theories are the suitable framework for studying hadronic molecules and are discussed in both the continuum and finite volumes. Also pertinent lattice QCD results are presented. Further, the production mechanisms and decays of hadronic molecules are discussed and comments are given on the reliability of certain assertions often made in the literature.
The technique of stimulated Raman adiabatic passage (STIRAP), which allows efficient and selective population transfer between quantum states without suffering loss due to spontaneous emission, was introduced in 1990 by Gaubatz et al.. Since then STIRAP has emerged as an enabling methodology with widespread successful applications in many fields of physics, chemistry, and beyond. This article reviews the many applications of STIRAP emphasizing the developments since 2001, the time when the last major review on the topic was written (Vitanov, Fleischhauer et al.). A brief introduction into the theory of STIRAP and the early applications for population transfer within three-level systems is followed by the discussion of several extensions to multilevel systems, including multistate chains and tripod systems. The main emphasis is on the wide range of applications in atomic and molecular physics (including atom optics, cavity quantum electrodynamics, formation of ultracold molecules, etc.), quantum information (including single-and two-qubit gates, entangled-state preparation, etc.), solid-state physics (including processes in doped crystals, nitrogen-vacancy centers, superconducting circuits, semiconductor quantum dots and wells), and even some applications in classical physics (including waveguide optics, polarization optics, frequency conversion, etc.). Promising new prospects for STIRAP are also presented (including processes in optomechanics, precision experiments, detection of parity violation in molecules, spectroscopy of core-nonpenetrating Rydberg states, population transfer with x-ray pulses, etc.).
Spin electronics is a rapidly expanding field stimulated by a strong synergy between breakthrough basic research discoveries and industrial applications in the fields of magnetic recording, magnetic field sensors, nonvolatile memories [magnetic random access memories (MRAM) and especially spin-transfer-torque MRAM (STT-MRAM)]. In addition to the discovery of several physical phenomena (giant magnetoresistance, tunnel magnetoresistance, spin-transfer torque, spin-orbit torque, spin Hall effect, spin Seebeck effect, etc.), outstanding progress has been made on the growth and nanopatterning of magnetic multilayered films and nanostructures in which these phenomena are observed. Magnetic anisotropy is usually observed in materials that have large spin-orbit interactions. However, in 2002 perpendicular magnetic anisotropy (PMA) was discovered to exist at magnetic metal/oxide interfaces [for instance Co(Fe)/alumina]. Surprisingly, this PMA is observed in systems where spin-orbit interactions are quite weak, but its amplitude is remarkably large-comparable to that measured at Co/Pt interfaces, a reference for large interfacial anisotropy (anisotropy similar to 1.4 erg/cm(2) = 1.4 mJ/m(2)). Actually, this PMA was found to be very common at magnetic metal/oxide interfaces since it has been observed with a large variety of amorphous or crystalline oxides, including AlOx, MgO, TaOx, HfOx, etc. This PMA is thought to be the result of electronic hybridization between the oxygen and the magnetic transition metal orbit across the interface, a hypothesis supported by ab initio calculations. Interest in this phenomenon was sparked in 2010 when it was demonstrated that the PMA at magnetic transition metal/oxide interfaces could be used to build out-of-plane magnetized magnetic tunnel junctions for STT-MRAM cells. In these systems, the PMA at the CoFeB/MgO interface can be used to simultaneously obtain good memory retention, thanks to the large PMA amplitude, and a low write current, thanks to a relatively weak Gilbert damping. These two requirements for memories tend to be difficult to reconcile since they rely on the same spin-orbit coupling. PMA-based approaches have now become ubiquitous in the designs for perpendicular STT-MRAM, and major microelectronics companies are actively working on their development with the first goal of addressing embedded FLASH and static random access memory-type of applications. Scalability of STT-MRAM devices based on this interfacial PMA is expected to soon exceed the 20-nm nodes. Several very active new fields of research also rely on interfacial PMA at magnetic metal/oxide interfaces, including spin-orbit torques associated with Rashba or spin Hall effects, record high speed domain wall propagation in buffer/magnetic metal/oxide-based magnetic wires, and voltage-based control of anisotropy. This review deals with PMA at magnetic metal/oxide interfaces from its discovery, by examining the diversity of systems in which it has been observed and the physicochemical methods through which the key roles played by the electronic hybridization at the metal/oxide interface were elucidated. The physical origins of the phenomenon are also covered and how these are supported by ab initio calculations is dealt with. Finally, some examples of applications of this interfacial PMA in STT-MRAM are listed along with the various emerging research topics taking advantage of this PMA.
Heisenberg's uncertainty principle forms a fundamental element of quantum mechanics. Uncertainty relations in terms of entropies were initially proposed to deal with conceptual shortcomings in the original formulation of the uncertainty principle and, hence, play an important role in quantum foundations. More recently, entropic uncertainty relations have emerged as the central ingredient in the security analysis of almost all quantum cryptographic protocols, such as quantum key distribution and two-party quantum cryptography. This review surveys entropic uncertainty relations that capture Heisenberg's idea that the results of incompatible measurements are impossible to predict, covering both finite- and infinite-dimensional measurements. These ideas are then extended to incorporate quantum correlations between the observed object and its environment, allowing for a variety of recent, more general formulations of the uncertainty principle. Finally, various applications are discussed, ranging from entanglement witnessing to wave-particle duality to quantum cryptography.
A comprehensive review is presented of the physical behavior of yield stress materials in soft condensed matter, which encompasses a broad range of materials from colloidal assemblies and gels to emulsions and non-Brownian suspensions. All these disordered materials display a nonlinear flow behavior in response to external mechanical forces due to the existence of a finite force threshold for flow to occur: the yield stress. Both the physical origin and rheological consequences associated with this nonlinear behavior are discussed and an overview is given of experimental techniques available to measure the yield stress. Recent progress is discussed concerning a microscopic theoretical description of the flow dynamics of yield stress materials, emphasizing, in particular, the role played by relaxation time scales, the interplay between shear flow and aging behavior, the existence of inhomogeneous shear flows and shear bands, wall slip, and nonlocal effects in confined geometries.
This article reviews recent developments in tests of fundamental physics using atoms and molecules, including the subjects of parity violation, searches for permanent electric dipole moments, tests of the CPT theorem and Lorentz symmetry, searches for spatiotemporal variation of fundamental constants, tests of quantum electrodynamics, tests of general relativity and the equivalence principle, searches for dark matter, dark energy, and extra forces, and tests of the spin-statistics theorem. Key results are presented in the context of potential new physics and in the broader context of similar investigations in other fields. Ongoing and future experiments of the next decade are discussed.
The newly emerging field of wave front shaping in complex media has recently seen enormous progress. The driving force behind these advances has been the experimental accessibility of the information stored in the scattering matrix of a disordered medium, which can nowadays routinely be exploited to focus light as well as to image or to transmit information even across highly turbid scattering samples. An overview of these new techniques, their experimental implementations, and the underlying theoretical concepts following from mesoscopic scattering theory is provided. In particular, the intimate connections between quantum transport phenomena and the scattering of light fields in disordered media, which can both be described by the same theoretical concepts, are highlighted. Particular emphasis is put on how these topics relate to application-oriented research fields such as optical imaging, sensing, and communication.
What are topological phases of matter? First, they are phases of matter at zero temperature. Second, they have a nonzero energy gap for the excitations above the ground state. Third, they are disordered liquids that seem to have no feature. But those disordered liquids actually can have rich patterns of many-body entanglement representing new kinds of order. This Colloquium gives a simple introduction and a brief survey of topological phases of matter. First topological phases with topological order (i.e., with long-range entanglement) are discussed. Then topological phases without topological order (i.e., with short-range entanglement) are covered.
Photon-photon scattering in vacuum is extremely weak. However, strong effective interactions between single photons can be realized by employing strong light-matter coupling. These interactions are a fundamental building block for quantum optics, bringing many-body physics to the photonic world and providing important resources for quantum photonic devices and for optical metrology. This Colloquium reviews the physics of strongly interacting photons in one-dimensional systems with no optical confinement along the propagation direction. It focuses on two recently demonstrated experimental realizations: superconducting qubits coupled to open transmission lines and interacting Rydberg atoms in a cold gas. Advancements in the theoretical understanding of these systems are presented in complementary formalisms and compared to experimental results. The experimental achievements are summarized alongside a description of the quantum optical effects and quantum devices emerging from them.
Astrophysical black hole candidates are thought to be the Kerr black holes of general relativity, but there is not yet direct observational evidence that the spacetime geometry around these objects is described by the Kerr solution. The study of the properties of the electromagnetic radiation emitted by gas or stars orbiting these objects can potentially test the Kerr black hole hypothesis. This paper reviews the state of the art of this research field, describing the possible approaches to test the Kerr metric with current and future observational facilities and discussing current constraints.
Random numbers are a fundamental resource in science and engineering with important applications in simulation and cryptography. The inherent randomness at the core of quantum mechanics makes quantum systems a perfect source of entropy. Quantum random number generation is one of the most mature quantum technologies with many alternative generation methods. This review discusses the different technologies in quantum random number generation from the early devices based on radioactive decay to the multiple ways to use the quantum states of light to gather entropy from a quantum origin. Randomness extraction and amplification and the notable possibility of generating trusted random numbers even with untrusted hardware using device- independent generation protocols are also discussed.