Saturday, January 09, 2010

Golden Ratio Discovered in Quantum World

Hidden Symmetry Observed for the First Time in Solid State Matter ScienceDaily (Jan. 7, 2010)   Researchers from the Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin für Materialien und Energie (HZB), in cooperation with colleagues from Oxford and Bristol Universities, as well as the Rutherford Appleton Laboratory, UK, have for the first time observed a nanoscale symmetry hidden in solid state matter. They have measured the signatures of a symmetry showing the same attributes as the golden ratio famous from art and architecture.

When applying a magnetic field at right angles to an aligned spin the magnetic chain will transform into a new state called quantum critical, which can be thought of as a quantum version of a fractal pattern. 

Prof. Alan Tennant, the leader of the Berlin group, explains "The system reaches a quantum uncertain -- or a Schrödinger cat state. This is what we did in our experiments with cobalt niobate. We have tuned the system exactly in order to turn it quantum critical."

By tuning the system and artificially introducing more quantum uncertainty the researchers observed that the chain of atoms acts like a nanoscale guitar string.

The research team is publishing these findings in the Jan. 8, 2010 issue of the journal Science.


Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

Coincidence : The phenomenon of the golden ratio in human vision, art, cognition and locomotion was explained a few days ago based on physics: the Constructal Law of design in nature.

See The Guardian:

and the top entry at: