spin zone: physicists get 1st look at strange quantum magnetism
Using super- For the first time, physicists have observed a strange phenomenon called quantum magnetism, which describes the behavior of a single atom like a small stick magnet. Quantum magnetism is a bit different from classical magnetism, which you see when you stick a magnet to the refrigerator, because a single atom has a mass called spin, which is quantum, or in a discrete state ( Usually called up or down). However, it is difficult to see the behavior of individual atoms because it needs to cool the atoms to extremely cold temperatures and find a way to \"capture\" them. The new discovery, detailed in the May 24 issue of Science, also opens the door for a better understanding of physical phenomena, such as conductivity, which seems to be related to the collective quantum properties of some materials. [ Distorted Physics: 7 hearts- Blowing Discovery] Research Group of the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH) In Zurich, one is concerned about the spin of the atom, because it is it that makes the magnet magnetic. All spins of the Zhongyuan in the stick magnet point in the same way. To get a clear picture of the spin behavior of the atom, the researchers had to cool the potassium atom to near absolute zero. In this way, random hot \"noise \"- It\'s basically background radiation and heat. It does not destroy the landscape because of the surrounding potassium atoms. Then scientists created an \"optical grid\" A set of criss-crossed lasers The area where the beam interferes with each other to produce high or low potential energy. Neutral atoms without charge tend to sit in the \"hole\" of the lattice, which is the area with lower energy. Once the lattice is established, atoms sometimes randomly \"tunnel\" through the sides of the well, because the quantum properties of the particles allow them to be in multiple places at the same time, or have a different amount of energy. [ Quantum Physics: The Coolest small particles in nature Another factor that determines the position of atoms in the optical lattice is their upper or lower spin. If the spin of the two atoms is the same, they cannot be in the same state. This means that atoms tend to enter the hole together with other atoms with opposite spin. After a while, a line of atoms will spontaneously organize in a non-random pattern. This behavior is different from the material in the macro world, and their orientation can have a wide range of internalbetween values; That\'s why most things are not magnets. The spin of the electron in an atom is randomly oriented, offsetting each other. This is what the researchers found. The spin of an atom is indeed organized, at least on the scale examined by the experiment. \"The question is, what is the magnetic properties of these materials? Size chain? Tilman Esslinger, a physics professor at ETH, said his lab did these experiments. \"Do I have these materials for performance? How can these attributes be useful? \"Quantum magnetic this experiment provides the possibility to increase the number of atoms in the lattice and even create two atoms. The size of the atom, arranged in a grid, may also be a grid of triangles. One debate among experts is whether the spontaneous ordering of atoms will occur in the same way on a larger scale. A random pattern means that, for example, in a block of iron atoms, it is possible for one to see an atom with a spin up or down in any direction. The spin state is in the so-called \"spin liquid- A variety of states. But atoms can be arranged spontaneously on a larger scale. \"They have laid the foundation for a variety of theoretical issues,\" said Han, professor of condensed matter physics theory at the State University of New York at Buffalo, who was not involved in the study. \"They haven\'t really built the long term. Rather, they want to prove that they have observed a local magnetic order. \"Whether the order discovered by scientists extends to a larger scale is an important question, because when the atoms are all arranged, the magnetism itself comes from the spin of the atom. These rotations are usually aligned randomly. But at very low temperatures and at small scales, this change is different from the behavior of quantum magnets. Han pointed out that such a grid, especially the structure of the potential well connected to the other three, not the two or four, will be particularly interesting. Esslinger\'s lab shows that atoms tend to jump into potential holes where the spin is opposite; But if these holes are arranged into atoms, it can jump to the other two atoms, because one of the two atoms is always in the same spin state, so it cannot \"choose\" which well to go. Ellinger says his lab wants to try to build two. Explore this question. \"What happens to magnetism if I change the geometry? It is not clear whether the rotation should be up or down. \"Focus on the science of our lives, Facebook and Google. Original article about life science. com. Nine of the biggest unsolved mysteries in the physics Gallery: dreamy images reveal the beauty of physics. What is that? Your physical question answers the copyright 2013 live science of TechMediaNetwork. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or re-distributed.