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See detailMagneto-optical activity in non-magnetic hyperbolic nanoparticles
Kuttruff, Joel; Gabbani, Alessio; Petrucci, Gaia et al

in Physical Review Letters (in press)

Active nanophotonics can be realized by controlling the optical properties of materials with external magnetic fields. Here, we explore the influence of optical anisotropy on the magneto-optical activity ... [more ▼]

Active nanophotonics can be realized by controlling the optical properties of materials with external magnetic fields. Here, we explore the influence of optical anisotropy on the magneto-optical activity in non-magnetic hyperbolic nanoparticles. We demonstrate that the magneto-optical response is driven by fundamental electric and magnetic dipole modes induced by the hyperbolic dispersion. Magnetic circular dichroism experiments confirm the theoretical predictions and reveal tunable magneto-optical activity across the visible and near infrared spectral range. [less ▲]

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See detailDissipation-Time Uncertainty Relation
Falasco, Gianmaria UL; Esposito, Massimiliano UL

in Physical Review Letters (2020), 125(12), 120604

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See detailToward Understanding Complex Spin Textures in Nanoparticles by Magnetic Neutron Scattering
G. Vivas, Laura; Yanes, Rocio; Berkov, Dmitry et al

in Physical Review Letters (2020), 125

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See detailArchetypal Soft-Mode-Driven Antipolar Transition in Francisite Cu3Bi(SeO3)(2)O2Cl
Milesi-Brault, Cosme; Toulouse, Constance UL; Constable, Evan et al

in PHYSICAL REVIEW LETTERS (2020), 124(9), 097603-6

Model materials are precious test cases for elementary theories and provide building blocks for the understanding of more complex cases. Here, we describe the lattice dynamics of the structural phase ... [more ▼]

Model materials are precious test cases for elementary theories and provide building blocks for the understanding of more complex cases. Here, we describe the lattice dynamics of the structural phase transition in francisite Cu3Bi(SeO3)(2)O2Cl at 115 K and show that it provides a rare archetype of a transition driven by a soft antipolar phonon mode. In the high-symmetry phase at high temperatures, the soft mode is found at (0,0,0.5) at the Brillouin zone boundary and is measured by inelastic x-ray scattering and thermal diffuse scattering. In the low-symmetry phase, this soft-mode is folded back onto the center of the Brillouin zone as a result of the doubling of the unit cell, and appears as a fully symmetric mode that can be tracked by Raman spectroscopy. On both sides of the transition, the mode energy squared follows a linear behavior over a large temperature range. First-principles calculations reveal that, surprisingly, the flat phonon band calculated for the high-symmetry phase seems incompatible with the displacive character found experimentally. We discuss this unusual behavior in the context of an ideal Kittel model of an antiferroelectric transition. [less ▲]

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See detailWork Statistics across a Quantum Phase Transition
Fei, Zhaoyu; Freitas, Nahuel; Cavina, Vasco UL et al

in Physical Review Letters (2020), 124(17), 170603

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See detailArchetypal Soft-Mode-Driven Antipolar Transition in Francisite Cu3BiðSeO3Þ2O2Cl
Milesi-Brault, Cosme; Toulouse, Constance UL; Constable, Evan et al

in Physical Review Letters (2020)

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See detailEfficiency Fluctuations of Stochastic Machines Undergoing a Phase Transition
Vroylandt, Hadrien; Esposito, Massimiliano UL; Verley, Gatien

in Physical Review Letters (2020), 124(25), 250603

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See detailEntropy Production in Open Systems: The Predominant Role of Intraenvironment Correlations
Ptaszyński, Krzysztof; Esposito, Massimiliano UL

in PHYSICAL REVIEW LETTERS (2019)

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See detailGiant Electrophononic Response in PbTiO3 by Strain Engineering
Torres, Pol; Iñiguez, Jorge UL; Rurali, Riccardo

in PHYSICAL REVIEW LETTERS (2019), 123(18),

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See detailMono-to-multilayer transition in growing bacterial colonies
You, Zhihong; Pearce, Daniel J. G.; Sengupta, Anupam UL et al

in Physical Review Letters (2019), 123(17-25),

The transition from monolayers to multilayered structures in bacterial colonies is a fundamental step in biofilm development. Observed across different morphotypes and species, this transition is ... [more ▼]

The transition from monolayers to multilayered structures in bacterial colonies is a fundamental step in biofilm development. Observed across different morphotypes and species, this transition is triggered within freely growing bacterial microcolonies comprising a few hundred cells. Using a combination of numerical simulations and analytical modeling, here we demonstrate that this transition originates from the competition between growth-induced in-plane active stresses and vertical restoring forces, due to the cell-substrate interactions. Using a simple chainlike colony of laterally confined cells, we show that the transition sets when individual cells become unstable to rotations; thus it is localized and mechanically deterministic. Asynchronous cell division renders the process stochastic, so that all the critical parameters that control the onset of the transition are continuously distributed random variables. Here we demonstrate that the occurrence of the first division in the colony can be approximated as a Poisson process in the limit of large cell numbers. This allows us to approximately calculate the probability distribution function of the position and time associated with the first extrusion. The rate of such a Poisson process can be identified as the order parameter of the transition, thus highlighting its mixed deterministic-stochastic nature. [less ▲]

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See detailMechanical Resonances of Mobile Impurities in a One-Dimensional Quantum Fluid
Schmidt, Thomas UL; Dolcetto, Giacomo; Pedder, Christopher et al

in Physical Review Letters (2019), 123

We study a one-dimensional interacting quantum liquid hosting a pair of mobile impurities causing backscattering. We determine the effective retarded interaction between the two impurities mediated by the ... [more ▼]

We study a one-dimensional interacting quantum liquid hosting a pair of mobile impurities causing backscattering. We determine the effective retarded interaction between the two impurities mediated by the liquid. We show that for strong backscattering this interaction gives rise to resonances and antiresonances in the finite-frequency mobility of the impurity pair. At the antiresonances, the two impurities remain at rest even when driven by a (small) external force. At the resonances, their synchronous motion follows the external drive in phase and reaches maximum amplitude. Using a perturbative renormalization group analysis in quantum tunneling across the impurities, we study the range of validity of our model. We predict that these mechanical antiresonances are observable in experiments on ultracold atom gases confined to one dimension. [less ▲]

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See detailElectric-Field Control of Magnetization, Jahn-Teller Distortion, and Orbital Ordering in Ferroelectric Ferromagnets
Chen, Lan; Xu, Changsong; Tian, Haoye UL et al

in PHYSICAL REVIEW LETTERS (2019), 122(24),

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See detailFerroelectricity with Asymmetric Hysteresis in Metallic LiOsO3 Ultrathin Films
Lu, Jinlian; Chen, Gong; Luo, Wei et al

in PHYSICAL REVIEW LETTERS (2019), 122(22),

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See detailDeterministic Limit of Intracellular Calcium Spikes
Voorsluijs, Valerie UL; Ponce Dawson, S.; De Decker, Y. et al

in Physical Review Letters (2019), 122(8), 088101

In nonexcitable cells, global Ca2+ spikes emerge from the collective dynamics of clusters of Ca2+ channels that are coupled by diffusion. Current modeling approaches have opposed stochastic descriptions ... [more ▼]

In nonexcitable cells, global Ca2+ spikes emerge from the collective dynamics of clusters of Ca2+ channels that are coupled by diffusion. Current modeling approaches have opposed stochastic descriptions of these systems to purely deterministic models, while both paradoxically appear compatible with experimental data. Combining fully stochastic simulations and mean-field analyses, we demonstrate that these two approaches can be reconciled. Our fully stochastic model generates spike sequences that can be seen as noise-perturbed oscillations of deterministic origin, while displaying statistical properties in agreement with experimental data. These underlying deterministic oscillations arise from a phenomenological spike nucleation mechanism. [less ▲]

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See detailThermodynamics of Quantum Information Flows
Ptaszynski, Krzysztof; Esposito, Massimiliano UL

in Physical Review Letters (2019), 122(15),

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See detailStatistics of Colloidal Suspensions Stirred by Microswimmers
Ortlieb, Levke; Rafai, Salima; Peyla, Philippe et al

in Physical Review Letters (2019), 122(14),

We present a statistical analysis of the experimental trajectories of colloids in a dilute suspension of the green algae Chlamydomonas reinhardtii. The measured probability density function (pdf) of the ... [more ▼]

We present a statistical analysis of the experimental trajectories of colloids in a dilute suspension of the green algae Chlamydomonas reinhardtii. The measured probability density function (pdf) of the displacements of colloids covers 7 orders of magnitude. The pdfs are characterized by non-Gaussian tails for intermediate time intervals, but nevertheless they collapse when scaled with their standard deviation. This diffusive scaling breaks down for longer time intervals and the pdf becomes Gaussian. However, the mean squared displacements of tracer positions are linear over the complete measurement time interval. Experiments are performed for various tracer diameters, swimmer concentrations, and mean swimmer velocities. This allows a rigorous comparison with several theoretical models. We can exclude a description based on an effective temperature and other mean field approaches that describe the irregular motion as a sum of the fluctuating far field of many microswimmers. The data are best described by the microscopic model by J.-L. Thiffeault, Distribution of particle displacements due to swimming microorganisms, Phys. Rev. E 92, 023023 (2015). [less ▲]

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See detailExciton-Phonon Coupling in the Ultraviolet Absorption and Emission Spectra of Bulk Hexagonal Boron Nitride
Paleari, Fulvio UL; Miranda, Henrique P. C.; Molina-Sanchez, Alejandro et al

in PHYSICAL REVIEW LETTERS (2019), 122(18), 187401-6

We present an ab initio method to calculate phonon-assisted absorption and emission spectra in the presence of strong excitonic effects. We apply the method to bulk hexagonal BN, which has an indirect ... [more ▼]

We present an ab initio method to calculate phonon-assisted absorption and emission spectra in the presence of strong excitonic effects. We apply the method to bulk hexagonal BN, which has an indirect band gap and is known for its strong luminescence in the UV range. We first analyze the excitons at the wave vector (q) over bar of the indirect gap. The coupling of these excitons with the various phonon modes at (q) over bar is expressed in terms of a product of the mean square displacement of the atoms and the second derivative of the optical response function with respect to atomic displacement along the phonon eigenvectors. The derivatives are calculated numerically with a finite difference scheme in a supercell commensurate with (q) over bar. We use detailed balance arguments to obtain the intensity ratio between emission and absorption processes. Our results explain recent luminescence experiments and reveal the exciton-phonon coupling channels responsible for the emission lines. [less ▲]

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See detailPhotoinduced Phase Transitions in Ferroelectrics
Paillard, Charles; Torun, Engin UL; Wirtz, Ludger UL et al

in PHYSICAL REVIEW LETTERS (2019), 123(8), 087601-6

Ferroic materials naturally exhibit a rich number of functionalities, which often arise from thermally, chemically, or mechanically induced symmetry breakings or phase transitions. Based on density ... [more ▼]

Ferroic materials naturally exhibit a rich number of functionalities, which often arise from thermally, chemically, or mechanically induced symmetry breakings or phase transitions. Based on density functional calculations, we demonstrate here that light can drive phase transitions as well in ferroelectric materials such as the perovskite oxides lead titanate and barium titanate. Phonon analysis and total energy calculations reveal that the polarization tends to vanish under illumination, to favor the emergence of nonpolar phases, potentially antiferroelectric, and exhibiting a tilt of the oxygen octahedra. Strategies to tailor photoinduced phases based on phonon instabilities in the electronic ground state are also discussed. [less ▲]

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