Science

Quantum Crystals and Their Defects

Date: 

Thursday, 21 June, 2018 -
14:00 to 15:00

Where: 

Chemical Sciences Building (F10), Room M18

Hosts: 

School of Materials Science and Engineering

Type of event: 

Seminar

Recent theoretical and experimental findings in solid helium, the most quantum crystal in Nature, are reviewed.

Recent theoretical and experimental findings in solid helium, the most quantum crystal in Nature, are reviewed.
In spite of many years of continued work, there still remain some experimental observations in solid helium that
are not completely understood and opened to theoretical discussions. One example is the possible existence of
a supersolid phase (i.e., a crystal exhibiting superfluid-like behaviour). Working with state-of-the-art ab initio
approaches, known as quantum Monte Carlo methods, it is explained how quantum nuclear effects manifest in its
energetic and structural properties of solid helium. The quantum behaviour of crystalline defects such as vacancies
and dislocations and their impact on the dynamical properties of the crystal, are discussed in the light of new
theoretical insights.

Biography: 

Jordi Boronat is Professor of Physics at the Polytechnic University of Catalonia (Barcelona, Spain). After his
PhD in the University of Barcelona he was appointed Assistant Professor by the Polytechnic University of Catalonia,
where he has occupied different positions until becoming (Full) Professor. Prof Boronat is the leader of the
Barcelona Quantum Monte Carlo research group (bqmc.upc.edu), working in the development of quantum
Monte Carlo methods and their application to quantum fluids and solids. He is the author of more
than 180 papers, Fellow of the American Physical Society (since 2014), and recipient of the Feenberg Memorial
Medal (awarded in 2017 for his significant contributions to the field of quantum-many body theories).