Quantum mechanics dictates the behaviour of electrons, atoms and molecules at the nanometre scale. This in turn determines the macroscopic properties of materials, such as the electrical conduction in semiconductors, metals and superconductors. The particle-wave duality of electrons and atoms becomes important at the nanoscale. Unlike waves such as sound and light which normally interact weakly with each other, electrons and atoms can be strongly interacting. The interplay and competition between wave-like propagation, interactions and quantum certainty give rise to a rich variety of physical phenomena, including the emergence of new phases of matter.

Research in the CMTH group in this area include

  • Non-equilibrium quantum physics: from the fundamentals of nanothermodynamics to charge transport in nano-electromechanical devices
  • Quantum phases of matter as an emergent phenomenon from simple rules of quantum mechanics for interacting particles: superfluidity, excition condensation and new phenomena in ultracold atomic systems.