Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Materials Science Mystery Of 'Hidden Order' Solved: How A New Phase Arises And Why

Date:
February 23, 2009
Source:
Uppsala Universitet
Summary:
Scientists have now explained the formerly unsolved mystery in materials science known as 'the hidden order' -- how a new phase arises and why. This is a discovery that can be of great importance to our understanding of how new material properties occur, how they can be controlled and exploited in the future. The findings may be of great importance to future energy supply.

How does a new phase arise, and why? New research points to an explanation of what has up until now been an unsolved riddle in materials science.
Credit: iStockphoto/Mark Scott

“One of the most important problems in materials science solved,” reports Professor Peter Oppeneer of Uppsala University. Together with three colleagues, he has managed to explain the hitherto unsolved riddle in materials science known as ‘the hidden order' - how a new phase arises and why.

This is a discovery that can be of great importance to our understanding of how new material properties occur, how they can be controlled and exploited in the future.

For a long time researchers have attempted to develop the superconducting materials of the future that will be able to conduct energy without energy losses, something of great importance to future energy production. But one piece of the puzzle has been missing. There are several materials that evince a clear phase shift in all thermodynamic properties when the temperature falls below a certain transitional temperature, but no one has been able to explain the new collective order in the material. Until now, it has been called the hidden order.

"The hidden order was discovered 24 years ago, and for all these years scientists have tried to find an explanation, but so far no one has succeeded. This has made the question one of the hottest quests in materials science. And now that we can explain how the hidden order in materials occurs, in a manner that has never been seen before, we have solved one of the most important problems of our day in this scientific field," says Professor Peter Oppeneer.

Four physicists from Uppsala University, led by Peter Oppeneer and in collaboration with John Mydosh from the University of Cologne, who discovered the hidden order 24 years ago, show through large-scale calculations how the hidden order occurs. Extremely small magnetic fluctuations prompt changes in the macroscopic properties of the material, so an entirely new phase arises, with different properties.

"Never before have we seen the so-called ‘magnetic spin excitations' produce a phase transition and the formation of a new phase. In ordinary material this excitation cannot change the phase and properties of the material because it is too weak. But now we have shown that this is in fact possible," says Peter Oppeneer.

What explains in detail all of the physical phenomena in the hidden order is a computer-based theory. Among other applications, it can be used to better understand high-temperature superconducting materials and will thus be important in the development of new superconducting materials and future energy production.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Uppsala Universitet. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Elgazzar et al. Hidden order in URu2Si2 originates from Fermi surface gapping induced by dynamic symmetry breaking. Nature Materials, Feb 22, 2009; DOI: 10.1038/nmat2395

Cite This Page:

Uppsala Universitet. "Materials Science Mystery Of 'Hidden Order' Solved: How A New Phase Arises And Why." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 23 February 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/02/090223091900.htm>.
Uppsala Universitet. (2009, February 23). Materials Science Mystery Of 'Hidden Order' Solved: How A New Phase Arises And Why. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 23, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/02/090223091900.htm
Uppsala Universitet. "Materials Science Mystery Of 'Hidden Order' Solved: How A New Phase Arises And Why." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/02/090223091900.htm (accessed July 23, 2014).

Share This




More Matter & Energy News

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Robot Parking Valet Creates Stress-Free Travel

Robot Parking Valet Creates Stress-Free Travel

AP (July 23, 2014) 'Ray' the robotic parking valet at Dusseldorf Airport in Germany lets travelers to avoid the hassle of finding a parking spot before heading to the check-in desk. (July 23) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Boeing Ups Outlook on 52% Profit Jump

Boeing Ups Outlook on 52% Profit Jump

Reuters - Business Video Online (July 23, 2014) Commercial aircraft deliveries rose seven percent at Boeing, prompting the aerospace company to boost full-year profit guidance- though quarterly revenues missed analyst estimates. Bobbi Rebell reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Europe's Car Market on the Rebound?

Europe's Car Market on the Rebound?

Reuters - Business Video Online (July 23, 2014) Daimler kicks off a round of second-quarter earnings results from Europe's top carmakers with a healthy set of numbers - prompting hopes that stronger sales in Europe will counter weakness in emerging markets. Hayley Platt reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
9/11 Commission Members Warn of Terror "fatigue" Among American Public

9/11 Commission Members Warn of Terror "fatigue" Among American Public

Reuters - US Online Video (July 22, 2014) Ten years after releasing its initial report, members of the 9/11 Commission warn of the "waning sense of urgency" in combating terrorists attacks. Mana Rabiee reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins