from Quantum Materials to the Origin of Black Holes

In the time of quantum technology and big data, scientists start to integrate Artificial Intelligence (AI) and computational approaches into the fundament research about our mother Nature and Universe. This series of two lectures will help us to unfold such interesting discovery processes. Dr Zi Yang MENG, Associate Professor at HKU Department of Physics, will explain the important role played by AI and computation in the modern quantum material research in the first lecture. Find more

A bona fide topological Mott insulator discovered in twisted bilayer graphene model

Imagestacking two sheets of graphene – the 2D form of graphite, or the pencil at your hand – in which the carbon atoms form a hexagonal lattice and twist the top sheet out of alignment with the sheet below, yielding a periodic arrangement of atoms named moiré pattern. Do you know that at a twisted angle of about 1o – people now call it the ‘magic’ angle – the system could exhibit very exotic behaviours such as becoming an insulator, a metal or even a superconductor? Can you imagine the same carbon atom in your pencil (graphite) becoming a superconductor when twisted to the magic angle? It indeed did as people discovered it in 2018, but why? Continue reading

Higgs mode via dimensional crossover in quantum magnets

The Higgs mode or the Anderson-Higgs mechanism (named after another Nobel Laureate Philip W ANDERSON), has widespread influence in our current understanding of the physical law for mass ranging from particle physics - the elusive “God particle” Higgs boson discovered in 2012 to the more familiar and important phenomena of superconductors and magnets in condensed matter physics and quantum material research. Continue reading

Correlation-Induced Insulating Topological Phases at Charge Neutrality in Twisted Bilayer Graphene

Twisted bilayer graphene (TBG) consists of two stacked layers of graphene rotated relative to one another. With a twist angle of about 1.10° the so-called “magic” angle, many unconventional electronic behaviors emerge, including superconductivity and correlated insulators, a type of insulating phase that arises from interactions between electrons. Elucidating the mechanism responsible for these electronic states in magic-angle TBG is a problem at the frontier of quantum materials research. To help solve this problem, we employ an unbiased quantum many-body numerical method (quantum Monte Carlo simulations) to investigate the possible insulating phases of TBG. Continue reading "Correlation-Induced Insulating Topological Phases at Charge Neutrality in Twisted Bilayer Graphene"

Evidence of the topological KT phase of TMGO

Quantum materials are becoming the cornerstone for the continuous prosperity of human society, including the next-generation AI computing chips that go beyond Moore’s law, the high-speed Maglev train, and the topological unit for quantum computers, etc. However, these complicated systems require modern computational techniques and advanced analysis to reveal their microscopic mechanism. Continue reading

The search of non-Fermi liquid

Three passions, simple but overwhelmingly strong, have governed my life: the longing for love, the search of knowledge, and unbearable pity for the suffering of mankind.

—Bertrand Russell

As Russell nicely put it, scientists are often driven by strong passions for the search of knowledge, such search not only benefits the human society, but often times brings the ecstasy to themselves -- the ecstasy for instance of understanding the hearts of men, knowing why the stars shine, and apprehending the Pythagorean power by which number holds sway above the flux -- that is so great that scientists would often have endured the long hours of working and sleepless nights for the pursuit of such joy. Continue reading "The search of non-Fermi liquid"

Breakthrough in Understanding Quantum Metals

Metals, especially interacting metallic states, never stop surprising people. Among the interesting phenomena that have emerged is the “high-temperature” superconductivity. This holds great promise for enabling highly-efficient energy transportation, but it can be achieved only at extremely cold temperatures (about -100 degrees Celsius or below) that are currently too costly and energy-intensive to replicate. Continue reading

Quantum Material research connecting physicists in Hong Kong, Beijing and Shanghai

A joint research team from The University of Hong Kong (HKU), Institute of Physics at Chinese Academy of Science, Songshan Lake Materials Laboratory, Beihang University in Beijing and Fudan University in Shanghai, provide a successful example of modern era quantum material research.  Continue reading