A rich variety of Fermi systems condense by forming bound pairs, including high-temperature and heavy-fermion superconductors, Sr 2RuO 4 (ref.), cold atomic gases and superfluid 3He (ref. ). Some of these form exotic quantum states with non-zero orbital angular momentum. We have discovered, in the case of 3He, that anisotropic disorder, engineered from highly porous silica aerogel, stabilizes a chiral superfluid state that otherwise would not exist. Furthermore, we find that the chiral axis of this state can be uniquely oriented with the application of a magnetic field perpendicular to the aerogel anisotropy axis. At sufficiently low temperature we observe a sharp transition from a uniformly oriented chiral state to a disordered structure consistent with locally ordered domains, contrary to expectations for a superfluid glass phase.
|Number of pages||4|
|State||Published - Apr 2012|
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
We are grateful to J. M. Parpia, V. V. Dmitriev, G. E. Volovik, N. Mulders, K. R. Shirer, A. M. Mounce and Y. Lee for discussion and to the National Science Foundation, DMR-1103625, DMR-0805277 and DMR-1106315, for support.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Physics and Astronomy (all)