September 08, 2008 – September 12, 2008
Location: Cambridge, United Kingdom
Organized by Mete Atature (University of Cambridge)
Jonathan Keeling (University of Cambridge), Peter Littlewood (University of Cambridge),
Francesca Marchetti (University of Oxford) and Marzena Szymanska (University of Cambridge and Warwick University). website
Spontaneous coherence is one of the most dramatic signatures of collective quantum behaviour on large scales. Such spontaneous coherence arises when, below a critical temperature, a phase transition occurs to a state with a macroscopic occupation of a single quantum state. The idea of such a phase transition was first considered for non-interacting particles by Bose and Einstein (i.e. Bose-Einstein condensation), however the general principles apply far more widely. Until recently, the experimental study of spontaneous coherence had been restricted to cold atomic gases, liquid helium and superconductors. However, the last few years have shown huge progress in several distinct but related examples of solid state systems.
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