Hexatic and mesoscopic phases in a 2D quantum coulomb system

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

We study the Wigner crystal melting in a two-dimensional quantum system of distinguishable particles interacting via the 1/r Coulomb potential. We use quantum Monte Carlo methods to calculate its phase diagram, locate the Wigner crystal region, and analyze its instabilities towards the liquid phase. We discuss the role of quantum effects in the critical behavior of the system, and compare our numerical results with the classical theory of melting, and the microemulsion theory of frustrated Coulomb systems. We find a Pomeranchuk effect much larger then in solid helium. In addition, we find that the exponent for the algebraic decay of the hexatic phase differs significantly from the Kosterilitz-Thouless theory of melting. We search for the existence of mesoscopic phases and find evidence of metastable bubbles but no mesoscopic phase that is stable in equilibrium.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number055701
JournalPhysical review letters
Volume103
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 6 2009

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melting
Coulomb potential
crystals
Monte Carlo method
liquid phases
bubbles
helium
phase diagrams
exponents
decay

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physics and Astronomy(all)

Cite this

Hexatic and mesoscopic phases in a 2D quantum coulomb system. / Clark, Bryan K.; Casula, Michele; Ceperley, D. M.

In: Physical review letters, Vol. 103, No. 5, 055701, 06.08.2009.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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