Quantum fluid

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A quantum fluid refers to any system that exhibits quantum mechanical effects at the macroscopic level such as superfluids, superconductors, ultracold atoms, etc.

Most matter is either solid or gaseous (at low densities) near absolute zero. However, for the cases of helium-4 and its isotope helium-3, there is a pressure range where they can remain liquid down to absolute zero because the amplitude of the quantum fluctuations experienced by the helium atoms is larger than the inter-atomic distances.

In the case of solid quantum fluids, it is only a fraction of its electrons or protons that behave like a “fluid”. One prominent example is that of superconductivity where quasi-particles made up of pairs of electrons and a phonon act as bosons which are then capable of collapsing into the ground state to establish a supercurrent with a resistivity near zero.

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References[edit]

  1. Lerner, Rita G. and Trigg, George L. (1990). Encyclopedia of Physics. VHC Publishers. ISBN 0-89573-752-3.