September 15, 2014 to October 10, 2014
Nordita, Stockholm
Europe/Stockholm timezone

Superconductivity as a Universal Emergent Phenomenon in Diverse Physical Systems

Not scheduled
132:028 (Nordita, Stockholm)


Nordita, Stockholm


Prof. Mike Guidry (University of Tennessee and Oak Ridge National Laboratory)


Superconductivity and superfluidity having generically recognizable features are observed or suspected across a strikingly broad range of physical systems: traditional BCS superconductors, cuprate high-temperature superconductors, iron-based high-temperature superconductors, organic superconductors, heavy-fermion superconductors, and superfluid helium-3 in condensed matter, in many aspects of low-energy nuclear structure physics, and in various exotic possibilities for gravitationally condensed objects such as neutron stars. Microscopically these systems differ fundamentally but the observed superconductivity and superfluidity exhibit two universal features: (1) They result from a condensate of fermion Cooper pairs, and (2) They represent emergent collective behavior that can have only an abstract dependence on the underlying microscopic physics. This universality can hardly be a coincidence but a unified understanding of superconductivity and superfluidity across these highly disparate fields seems impossible microscopically. A unified picture may be possible if superconductivity and superfluidity are viewed as resulting from physics that depends only on broad physical principles operating systematically at the emergent scale, with physics at the underlying microscopic scale entering only parametrically. I will give an overview of superconductivity and superfluidity found in various fermionic condensed matter, nuclear physics, and neutron star systems. I will then propose that all these phenomena result from the systematic occurrence of generic algebraic structures for the emergent effective Hamiltonian, with the underlying microscopic physics being largely irrelevant except for influencing parameter values.

Primary author

Prof. Mike Guidry (University of Tennessee and Oak Ridge National Laboratory)

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