Solid-state physics studies how macroscopic properties of solids (mechanical, electrical, optical, etc.) result from their microscopic structure. It usually deals with the scale where quantum properties of the particles are substantial.

learn more… | top users | synonyms

4
votes
1answer
163 views

What is the mass of the emergent magnetic monopoles in spin ice and how is the mass of an emergent particle determined?

In solid state physics emergent particles are very common. How one determines if they are gap-less excitations? Do the defects in spin ice called magnetic monopoles have mass? What is the mass of ...
4
votes
1answer
2k views

What is injection level (semiconductor physics)?

I am currently reading journal articles about semiconductor physics in solar cells. What is injection level? I'll try to start off with what I understand. Photons hitting the silicon cause its ...
4
votes
1answer
474 views

Paramagnetism Spin-1/2 Particles - Partition Function

I'm trying to come up with an expression for the partition function of a system of spin-1/2 ideal gas particles on a line of length $L$. The total number of particles $N$ is fixed, with $N = ...
4
votes
0answers
258 views

What is the difference between spin glass and spin liquid?

What is the difference between spin glass and spin liquid? Do they both originate from frustration?
4
votes
0answers
418 views

Why do Fermi liquids have T^2 resistivity?

I have often read that metals that are Fermi liquids should have a resistivity that varies with temperature like $\rho(T) = \rho(0) + a T^2 $. I guess the $T^2$ part is the resistance due to ...
4
votes
1answer
81 views

Where to learn Temperature Dependent Conductivity induced by Electron-Phonon Interaction? [closed]

I want to learn how to calculate the temperature dependent conductivity induced by electron-phonon interaction. I know in low temperature, the resistance in metal $\rho$ is proportional to $T^5$, $T$ ...
4
votes
0answers
147 views

Crystal momentum and the vector potential

I noticed that the Aharonov–Bohm effect describes a phase factor given by $e^{\frac{i}{\hbar}\int_{\partial\gamma}q A_\mu dx^\mu}$. I also recognize that electrons in a periodic potential gain a phase ...
4
votes
1answer
279 views

What is crystal field anisotropy or effect ? It forces the magnetic moment to point in particular local direction..

Can you give a basic explanation of what is crystal field anisotropy ? What is the reason to arise ? In spin ice it forces the dipoles to point in the local 111 direction. For partially filled rare ...
3
votes
2answers
473 views

Sign of the hopping integral in tight binding model

The Hamiltonian of tight binding model reads $H=-|t|\sum\limits_{<i,j>}c_i^{\dagger}c_j+h.c.$, why is there a negative sign in the hopping term?
3
votes
2answers
235 views

Why is a critical system equal to a gapless system?

In condensed matter physics, people often say that a system without energy gap is a critical system. What does it mean? Any help is appreciated!
3
votes
2answers
2k views

Why electrons are relativistic in Graphene and non relativistic in vacuum?

If a free region in space has a potential difference of one volt, an electron in this region will acquire kinetic energy of 1 eV. Its speed will be much smaller than the speed of light hence it will ...
3
votes
3answers
5k views

Why is copper diamagnetic?

Cu has an unpaired electron in 4s, but it is diamagnetic. I thought that it has to be paramagnetic. What am I missing?
3
votes
4answers
1k views

Do we say that phonon has effective mass through its dispersion relation?

The effective mass is proportional to the second derivative of the dispersion relation d2k/dE2. Do we say that phonon have effective mass through it ? Spin wave have.
3
votes
2answers
7k views

Are all metals good conductor of electricity?

I am writing an article for kids, which is on conductors and insulators of electricity. If I make a statement that "All metals are electrical conductors and all non-metals are electrical insulators" ...
3
votes
4answers
551 views

Why does the density of states in a solid scale as $\sqrt{E}$?

In three dimensions, the density of states of a free electron is the square root of the energy of the electron. Can somebody explain the relationship between this dependence and the shape/formation of ...
3
votes
1answer
61 views

Is the ferromagnetism of iron understood completely?

In Feynman's lecture notes, he said that it is not (at his time). How is the situation today? Can first-principle calculation accounts the ferromagnetism of iron quantitatively now?
3
votes
1answer
1k views

Difference between steady state and equilibrium?

In semiconductor physics, what is the difference between steady state and equilibrium. How analysis of devices varies in these processes?
3
votes
1answer
157 views

Why does total spin conservation law forbid the spin wave gap in Heisenberg magnets?

What is the explanation for total spin conservation forbidding the spin wave gap in Heisenberg magnets?
3
votes
2answers
314 views

When is quasiparticle same as elementary excitation, and when is not?

Can anyone shed light on the comparison between these two concepts?
3
votes
3answers
175 views

Domain of validity for semiconductor equations

If I understand correctly, the distinction between semiconductors and insulators is a matter of convention? A semiconductor is basically an insulator with an (enough) narrow band gap, usually around ...
3
votes
4answers
175 views

Molecule vs Crystal

Feynman mentions in his lectures: ...the concept of a molecule of a substance is only approximate and exists only for a certain class of substances. It is clear in the case of water that the ...
3
votes
1answer
392 views

Does a quantum phase transition have latent heat?

As the title says, I am thinking about the question that whether a quantum phase transition has latent heat. If so, at 0 temperature, we can drive the system by some parameter from disorder phase to ...
3
votes
2answers
350 views

What are the applications of delta function potentials?

Are there real applications for using delta function potentials in quantum mechanics (other than using it as an exactly solvable toy model in introductory undergraduate quantum mechanics textbooks) ? ...
3
votes
1answer
337 views

What is the time correlation function in the Green-Kubo formulation of ionic current?

I am reading a paper, and I came across the Green-Kubo formulation, where the conductivity $\sigma$ of charged particles is related to the time correlation function of the $z$-component of the ...
3
votes
2answers
927 views

Propagation of light in transparent media: absorption and reemission or scattering?

In the two Phys.SE questions What is the mechanism behind the slowdown of light/photons in a transparent medium? and Why glass is transparent? transparent media were discussed. But I'd like to clarify ...
3
votes
1answer
68 views

What “propagates” a force through the rest of a solid?

So, in typing the title of this question I was recommended this awesome one, which confirmed my guess that this effect "propagates" at the speed of sound (though I just had a feeling, I don't really ...
3
votes
1answer
117 views

What does “optical conductivity” mean?

Does it just mean "AC electric conductivity"? If so, why have a special name for it, and why mention optical specifically? The wikipedia page on it is very sparse. This (warning, PDF) document just ...
3
votes
4answers
1k views

Can plasma turn back into gas, solid, or liquid?

I wanted to know if, since basic chemistry teaches you that states of matter can be changed, I was wondering particularly about plasma. I know that virtually all of the Sun is plasma, so I was ...
3
votes
1answer
992 views

Fermi level alignment and electrochemical potential between two metals

I'm trying to get a more intuitive/physical grasp of the Fermi level, like I have of electric potential. I know that, for just a single piece of metal in equilibrium, you have to have the electric ...
3
votes
1answer
47 views

Origin of interaction in inelastic neutron scatting

In solid state physics, inelastic neutron scattering is a commonly-used experimental technique for probing the energy spectrum of phonon and magnon excitations. This technique relies on the ...
3
votes
1answer
302 views

How is a Majorana fermion created when a s-wave superconductors is in proximity to a topological insulator (e.g. via an antidot)

Kane and Fu proposed a few geometries how to create Majorana zero modes using a s-wave superconductor in proximity to a 3D topological insulator (TI). -> ...
3
votes
1answer
255 views

Fermi level with Landau levels

So my question is regarding where the Fermi energy is when you have 2D electron gas in an applied magnetic field. My book explains that, using the Landau gauge, you find that the 2D density of states ...
3
votes
1answer
467 views

Nature of tetragonal distortion in Jahn-Teller effect

I am wondering: If I have a regular octahedron as my starting point, oriented along the x-y-z axis, and now Jahn-Teller suggest I elongate or compress along the $z$-axis, what happens along the other ...
3
votes
1answer
130 views

Group analysis forbids band-crossing in 1D?

Group analysis forbids band-crossing in 1D in terms of conventional band theory. I read this in a good solid state physics book. But there's no explanation at all. Can anyone help on this?
3
votes
1answer
140 views

Determining Fourier Coefficients by inspection

I'm beginning to learn about Fourier series/transforms. My teacher hopes that by now we should be able to examine a simple potential function and decompose it without having to actually do the ...
3
votes
2answers
156 views

Can Rydberg states exist within the bulk of a metal?

I am aware that outer shell electrons in rubidium atoms in an optical lattice can be excited to Rydberg levels, in which the electrons orbit well beyond the atoms to which they are bound. Is this ...
3
votes
1answer
1k views

Why is calcium paramagnetic?

As far as I understand, magnetism comes from the 'unpaired electrons' in the subshells of atoms. Atoms with paired electrons are diamagnetic ('not magnetic') while atoms with unpaired electrons are ...
3
votes
1answer
136 views

From the local Hooke's law to the global one

My system consist of a cylinder with axis Z that can contract and dilate along this axis. It obeys microscopically Hooke's law of elasticity: ...
3
votes
1answer
606 views

Relation between density and refractive index of medium

Is there any relation between Refractive index and density of a material? It is not found to be proportional in my experimental results. Is there any equation to relate these parameters?
3
votes
1answer
156 views

Repulsive classical identical particles on a square lattice

I am not sure whether it is some well-known named model in statistical physics. I could not find it in any standard text-book that I know of. Let there be $N$ identical classical particles ...
3
votes
1answer
214 views

Experimental samples with rare earth metal

Many experiments, such as optical, superconductivity, etc, use the samples that involve rare earth metals and transition metals. Why are they used that often. Is the main reasons: They have the ...
3
votes
1answer
27 views

Why do we still get sharp scattering spots with quasi-crystal?

In a quasi-crystal, there is no translational invariance. This means there is no delta-function in the Fourier transform. But to get a sharp scattering spot, we need a delta function. Physically, ...
3
votes
1answer
165 views

Why does the Fermi Surface cross the Brillouin zone boundary at right angles?

I'm not sure why the fermi surface crosses the Brillouin zone boundary at right angles. I understand that this is normally the case, but not necessarily always. I'm aware that the fermi surface is a ...
3
votes
2answers
85 views

Statistical Mechanics - Distribution of Energies

Consider a state space $\mathbb{X}$. The probability density function under a canonical ensemble is given by the Boltzmann distribution $$\pi_{\mathbb{X}}(x)=\frac{e^{-\beta ...
3
votes
1answer
248 views

What is an electron/hole pocket and what is the significance?

What is an electron/hole pocket and what is the significance? I'm trying to get my head around this. I've read what Ashcroft and Mermin have to say on the subject, but it's a little convoluted. They ...
3
votes
1answer
69 views

Possibility of stable muonic structures?

In an analogy to the neutron, which decays rapidly as a free particle, but when bound in a nucleus it is stable, would it be possible to crease a structure that permits the stability of muons - be it ...
3
votes
1answer
180 views

What determines Phonon - Phonon collisions?

I was in Solid State Physics lecture yesterday and we BRIEFLY went over what causes phonons to collide with one another. Things such as crystal imperfections, boundaries, Temperature, but I was ...
3
votes
1answer
71 views

Forward-scattering for a single impurity in an infinite system

I'm slightly confused with the following situation: Suppose you have an electron in a tight-binding model, and let's say we are in one dimension with $N$ lattice sites. Add to this a single ...
3
votes
1answer
434 views

Dopant concentration and changes in band gap energy

Thanks to this lovely website, I was able to pop out reasonable values for my band gap energies from a translucent material. As expected, I found a decrease in band gap energy due to my treatments. ...
3
votes
1answer
191 views

Algorithm for identifying planes in a Bravais Lattice

I have a lattice with Lattice Vectors $(\vec{t}_1,\vec{t}_2,\vec{t}_3)$ which are NOT orthogonal in general. How can I identify the atoms/unit cells that belong to a plane - that is normal to a given ...