Saltar al contenido.
Saltar al menú de navegación principal.
The quantum behavior of hydrogen affects the structural properties of hydrogen-rich compounds, possible candidates for room-temperature superconductivity.
Hydrogen is the atom more strongly subjected to quantum behavior. New theoretical results suggest that its quantum nature strongly affects the recently discovered sulfur hydride superconductor, a compound that at high pressure has the highest critical temperature reported for any superconductor. This new step towards understanding the underlying physics of high temperature superconductivity is published in Nature.
What governs the behavior of objects in our daily life is a classical deterministic physics, that is, Newton´s laws. These daily objects have both a determined position and velocity. This means, for example, that we can track an object over time. However, this is not possible in the atomic world, the quantum world. According to Heisenberg´s uncertainty principle, the velocity and position of a particle cannot be determined at the same time. As a consequence, instead of having a specific position, particles appear to us as described by a broad wave function that tells us only where it is more probable to find the particle.
Hydrogen, being the lightest element of the periodic table, is the atom most strongly subjected to such quantum behavior. Indeed, its quantum nature affects structural and physical properties of many hydrogen compounds. An important example is high-pressure ice, where quantum fluctuations of the proton lead to a symmetrization of the hydrogen bonds. Now, new theoretical results suggest that an analogous quantum hydrogen-bond symmetrization occurs in the recently discovered sulfur hydride superconductor, a compound that at high pressure has the highest critical temperature reported for any superconductor so far, 203 K (-70 ºC).
These results, reported today in Nature, were obtained by an international collaboration of researchers from the University of the Basque Country (UPV/EHU) and Donostia International Physics Center (DIPC); Sorbonne Universités – UPMC Université Paris 06; University of Cambridge; Cavendish Laboratory; Jiangsu Normal University; Carnegie Institution of Washington; Jilin University; and Università di Roma “La Sapienza”. First author of the work is Ion Errea, former Fellow Gipuzkoa at DIPC, and currently associate researcher.
Figure. Structure with symmetric hydrogen bonds induced by the quantum behavior of the protons, represented by the fluctuating blue spheroids.
Quantum hydrogen-bond symmetrization in the superconducting hydrogen sulfide system.
I. Errea, M. Calandra, C. J. Pickard, J. R. Nelson, R. J. Needs, Y. Li, H. Liu, Y. Zhang, Y. Ma, and F. Mauri.
Nature 532, 81-84 (2016).
Información sobre el sitio web del DIPC
Copyright © 2017 DIPC (Donostia International Physics Center)