Author Topic: Electron whirlpools seen for the first time  (Read 549 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Online Elderberry

  • TBR Contributor
  • *****
  • Posts: 24,392
Electron whirlpools seen for the first time
« on: July 09, 2022, 01:42:35 pm »
 Tech Explorist By Amit Malewar July 9, 2022

Long predicted but never observed.

Long predicted but never observed, fluid-like electron whirlpools could be
leveraged for next-gen low-power electronics. Credits: Christine Daniloff, MIT

Physicists at MIT and the Weizmann Institute of Science have visualized whirlpools in an electron fluid. This is the first time they observed electrons flowing in vortices, or whirlpools, the hallmarks of hydrodynamic flow.

Theorists have long predicted electrons whirlpools or vortices but have never been seen until now. Now, physicists have seen it, and it’s a clear sign of being in this new regime, where electrons behave as a fluid, not as individual particles.

Leonid Levitov, professor of physics at MIT, said, “We know when electrons go in a fluid state, [energy] dissipation drops, and that’s of interest in designing low-power electronics. This new observation is another step in that direction.”

In 2017, Levitov and colleagues at the University of Manchester detected signs of fluid-like electron behavior in graphene. They etched a thin channel on a graphene sheet with several pinch points. Sending current through the channel could also flow through the constrictions with little resistance.

This suggested that the current electrons could squeeze through the pinch points collectively, much like a fluid, rather than clogging like individual grains of sand.