2016 Impact factor 1.288
Atomic, Molecular, Optical and Plasma Physics

News / Highlights / Colloquium

EPJ D Highlight - Atoms crystallised by light for precision measurement

Trajectories and intensities of two beam splitters. © D. Holzmann et al.

A new study focuses on the collective dynamics of illuminated atoms coupled to photons travelling in a nanofiber

Theoretical physicists have uncovered the existence of self-organised dynamics of atoms, bound by light into a crystal, with long range atom-atom interactions. These findings were recently published in EPJ D by Daniela Holzmann from the University of Innsbruck, Austria, and colleagues. This approach could, among others, help to better understand the process of crystallisation in new materials, and help implement efficient photon storage and precision measurements. Applied to ultra-cold atoms, it could aid in the study of long-distance interactions in the quantum dynamics of one-dimensional non- conventional materials, referred to as exotic matter.

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EPJ D Colloquium - Multiscale approach to the physics of radiation damage with ions

Features, processes, and disciplines, associated with radiation therapy shown in a space–time diagram, which shows approximate temporal and spatial scales of the phenomena. The history from ionization/exciation to biological effects on the cellular level are shown in the main figure and features of ion propagation are shown in the inset.

In this EPJ D Colloquium, the authors review the multiscale approach to the assessment of biodamage that results from the irradiation of biological media with ions. This approach is explained in depth and compared to other approaches. The ion propagation processes that take place in the medium concurrent with ionisation and excitation of molecules, transport of secondary products, dynamics of the medium, and biological damage, take place on a number of different temporal, spatial and energy scales. The multiscale approach, a physical phenomenon-based analysis of the scenario that leads to radiation damage, has been designed to consider all relevant effects on a variety of scales and to enable quantitative assessment of biological damage as a result of irradiation with ions.

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EPJ D Colloquium - Laser selective spectromicroscopy of myriad single molecules: tool for far-field multicolour materials nanodiagnostics

An illustration of the principles of single-molecule spectromicroscopy

In this EPJ D Colloquium, the authors discuss the main principles, achievements and perspectives in the fields of highly-parallel luminescence spectroscopy and the imaging of single molecules (SMs) in transparent solids. Special attention is given to SM detection at low temperatures, where ultranarrow and bright zero-phonon lines (ZPLs) can be generated by emitting centres for observation.

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EPJ D Highlight - Plasma: Casimir and Yukawa mesons

Energy correction factor for two gold plates in the absence of any intervening plasma. © Ninham et al.

The Casimir electromagnetic fluctuation forces across plasmas are analogous to so-called weak nuclear interaction forces, as new findings show

A new theoretical work establishes a long-sought-after connection between nuclear particles and electromagnetic theories. Its findings suggests that there is an equivalence between generalised Casimir forces and what are referred to as weak nuclear interactions between protons and neutrons. The Casimir forces are due to the quantisation of electromagnetic fluctuations in vacuum, while the weak nuclear interactions are mediated by subatomic scale particles, originally called mesons by Yukawa. These findings by Barry Ninham from the Australian National University, in Canberra, and European colleagues, have now been published in EPJ D.

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EPJ D Highlight - Quantum holograms as atomic scale memory keepsake

Set up of the experiment showing the orthogonal side illumination. © A. N. Vetlugin et al.

A new theoretical study demonstrates for the first time that quantum holograms could be a candidate for becoming quantum information memory

Russian scientists have developed a theoretical model of quantum memory for light, adapting the concept of a hologram to a quantum system. These findings are included in study just published in EPJ D, by Anton Vetlugin and Ivan Sokolov from St. Petersburg State University in Russia. The authors demonstrate for the first time, that it is theoretically possible to retrieve, on demand, a given portion of the stored quantised light signal of a holographic image—set in a given direction in a given position in time sequence.

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EPJ D Colloquium: Recent positron-atom cross section measurements and calculations

In this EPJ D colloquium paper, the authors review a cross-section of recent results relating to low-energy positron scattering from atomic targets, and present a comparison of the latest measurements and calculations for positron collisions with the noble gases, together with a brief update on the newest studies addressing other atomic targets. In particular, they provide an overview of the work that has been done in examining elastic scattering, positronium formation, direct and total ionisation, as well as total scattering, at typical energies ranging from 0.1 eV to a few hundred eV.

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EPJ D Highlight - Atmospheric chemistry hinges on better physics model

Representations of a component of the wave packet of the N2O molecule during photoabsorption. © M. N. Daud

Improved theoretical model of photoabsorption of nitrous oxide matters because its by-product, nitric oxide, is involved in the catalytic destruction of stratospheric ozone

New theoretical physics models could help us better grasp the atmospheric chemistry of ozone depletion. Indeed, understanding photoabsorption of nitrous oxide (N2O)-- a process which involves the transfer of the energy of a photo to the molecule--matters because a small fraction of N2O reacts with oxygen atoms in the stratosphere to produce, among other things, nitric oxide (NO). The latter participates to the catalytic destruction of ozone (O3). Now, new theoretical work unveils the actual dynamic of the photoabsorption of nitrous oxide (N2O) molecules. These findings by Mohammad Noh Daud from the University of Malaya, Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia, have just been published in EPJ D. The work has led to new calculations of the probability of an absorption process taking place, also referred to as absorption cross section, which confirm experimental results.

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EPJ D Topical Review - Applied Bohmian Mechanics

Interaction of a hydrogen atom with a left-circularly polarized Laguerre-Gaussian beam

Bohmian mechanics provides an explanation of quantum phenomena in terms of point particles guided by wave functions. This EPJ D review focuses on the formalism of non-relativistic Bohmian mechanics, rather than its interpretation, and although the Bohmian and standard quantum mechanical theories have different formalisms, they both yield exactly the same predictions for all phenomena.

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EPJ D Topical Review - The density matrix renormalization group for ab initio quantum chemistry

Over the past 15 years, the density matrix renormalisation group (DMRG) has become increasingly important for ab initio quantum chemistry. Its underlying wavefunction ansatz, the matrix product state (MPS), is a low-rank decomposition of the full configuration interaction tensor. The virtual dimension of the MPS, viz. the rank of the decomposition, controls the size of the corner of the many-body Hilbert space that can be reached with the ansatz, and can be systematically increased until numerical convergence is reached. The MPS ansatz naturally captures exponentially decaying correlation functions, and the DMRG therefore works extremely well for noncritical one-dimensional systems.

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EPJ D Highlight - Water window imaging opportunity

Time-frequency analysis of dipole acceleration extracted from the numerical simulations performed in argon, for three different regimes of laser intensity. © Pérez-Hernández et al.

A new theoretical study elucidates mechanisms that could help in producing coherent radiations, and could ultimately help to achieve high-contrast images of biological samples

Ever heard of the water window? It consists of radiations in the 3.3 to 4.4 nanometre range, which are not absorbed by the water in biological tissues. New theoretical findings predict a novel way of achieving coherent radiations within the water window. These could be the basis of an optimal technique to obtain a high-contrast image of the biological samples or to be used in high-precision spectroscopy. Now, a new theoretical study identifies the physical mechanism needed to efficiently generate the harmonic radiations - which are multiples of an incoming laser’s frequency - at high laser intensities that occur beyond the saturation threshold of atoms and molecules. These findings, aimed at improving conventional methods of coherent radiation production to reach the water window, were recently published in the EPJ D by José Pérez-Hernández from the Centre for Pulsated Laser, CLPU, in Salamanca, Spain, and colleagues.

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Editors-in-Chief
V. Buzek, H. Kersten and A.V. Solov'yov
It has been a pleasure for me accepting the referee's commitment for your journal and I am hopeful to collaborate with you again in the future.

Simone Panaro

ISSN (Print Edition): 1434-6060
ISSN (Electronic Edition): 1434-6079

© EDP Sciences, Società Italiana di Fisica and Springer-Verlag

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