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Condensed matter physics studies materials made of a huge number of interacting elementary constituents. One speaks about "condensed" matter because typically in these materials, the average distance between elementary constituents is of the order of their own dimension: matter is "dense". For example, in a simple liquid the average distance between atoms is about the size of an atom. The global properties of a system differ in general largely from the individual behaviour of its elementary constituents: one speaks of collective behaviour. A well-known example is that of sound propagating in a crystal. A crystal is made of many atoms distributed on a regular lattice. When the crystal is at low temperature, the atoms are almost still. However, the motion of elementary excitations of the crystal do not resemble that of a free atom. They are acoustic (sound) waves involving a large number of atoms in the crystal. The associated quanta are the famous phonons.

Researchers in the THEO group are interested in diverse condensed matter systems. They seek to provide qualitative (and sometimes quantitative) explanations to phenomena observed in experiments and to predict new ones. Their aim is to understand the collective behaviour of these materials and to propose general concepts that apply to many such systems.

Recent publications:

  • Manca N, Bothner D, Monteiro AM R V L, et al. Bimodal Phase Diagram of the Superfluid Density in LaAlO 3 / SrTi O 3 Revealed by an Interfacial Waveguide Resonator. Physical Review Letters. 2019;122(3):036801. Available at: https://link.aps.org/doi/10.1103/PhysRevLett.122.036801. Accessed February 13, 2019.

  • Ménard GC, Brun C, Leriche R, et al. Yu-Shiba-Rusinov bound states versus topological edge states in Pb/Si(111). The European Physical Journal Special Topics. 2019;227(15-16):2303-2313.

  • del Valle J, Salev P, Tesler F, et al. Subthreshold firing in Mott nanodevices. Nature. 2019;569(7756):388-392.

  • Safi I. Driven quantum circuits and conductors: A unifying perturbative approach. Physical Review B. 2019;99(4).

  • Zhang Y, Mesaros A, Fujita K, et al. Machine learning in electronic-quantum-matter imaging experiments. Nature. 2019;570(7762):484-490.

  • Brun B, Martins F, Faniel S, et al. Thermoelectric Scanning-Gate Interferometry on a Quantum Point Contact. Physical Review Applied. 2019;11(3):034069. Available at: https://link.aps.org/doi/10.1103/PhysRevApplied.11.034069. Accessed June 19, 2019.

  • Kalugin P, Katz A. Robust minimal matching rules for quasicrystals. Acta Crystallographica Section A Foundations and Advances. 2019;75(5):669-693. Available at: http://scripts.iucr.org/cgi-bin/paper?S2053273319008180. Accessed October 23, 2019.

  • Pal HK. Anomalies in a slightly doped insulator with strong particle-hole asymmetry and a narrow gap: The case of SmB 6. Physical Review B. 2019;99(4):045149.

  • Ménard GC, Mesaros A, Brun C, et al. Isolated pairs of Majorana zero modes in a disordered superconducting lead monolayer. Nature Communications. 2019;10(1):2587.

  • Joets A. The caustic structure near a grazing point in three-dimensional space. Journal of Optics. 2019;21(6):065604.