APS March 2010

American Physical Society March Meeting - 2010
Oregon Convention Center
Portland, OR USA
15-19 March 2010 

"The Usual Suspects"

 Superconducting Fluctuations in One-Dimensional Quasi-periodic Metallic Chains

 Does the
Hold the Key to Room Temperature Superconductivity?

Paul Michael Grant
Principal, W2AGZ Technologies
Visiting Scholar in Applied Physics, Stanford University (2005-2008)
EPRI Science Fellow (Retired)
IBM Research Staff Member Emeritus
Senior Life Fellow, APS
Fellow, IOP (UK)

http://www.w2agz.com/BD_APS-March-2010.htm (This Page)
Session T41: Focus Session: Search for New Superconductors -
Nanotubes and Fullerides
Wednesday, 17 March 2010, Room F152
Oregon Convention Center
Talk T41.00008, 4:42 PM - 4:54 PM

Download Presentation (pdf (1.14 MB), ppt (1.69 MB))
Go to Talk T41.00008


 τ ≡ (1 + √5)/2

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A Quasi-Almost-Bio-Bibliography

"Almost Periodic Functions," A. S. Besicovitch, (Dover Publications, USA, 1954). [My PhD thesis addressed the optical properties of thin germanium films as a function of crystalline order, ranging from amorphous to single crystal homo/hetero-epitaxial samples.  Their properties were measured using a combination of reflectance and transmission experiments subsequently analyzed to yield optical constants which presumably were related to their "band structure."  My problem was that I had no idea what constituted the "band structure" of any system save those of perfect periodic crystalline solids.  One afternoon, after squash, I wandered down Brattle Street into a book store next to a bar Rudy Ludeke and I would patronize from time to time, where I spotted Besicovitch's little book. At the time, I thought Bohr's theory might apply to all non-crystalline solids (it doesn't, and you won't find it referenced in my thesis), but I've been fascinated with his "middle road" between Fourier series and Fourier transforms ever since, as one can see from the references to follow.  I do think the formalism holds the key to "room temperature" superconductivity.
BTW, in retrospect, probably the most profound aspect of my thesis was the discovery of the "strained lattice" effect arising from the difference in thermal expansion properties between substrate and film.  See pages 201-207 of the above thesis link, and pages 3119-3119 of its publication in JAP.]
"Electronic Structure of Disordered Solids and Almost Periodic Functions," P. M. Grant, BAPS Series II, Vol. 18, No. 3. p. 333, BK9, APS March Meeting, 19-22 March 1973, San Diego. [Those attending the 1973 March Meeting are more likely to remember the announcement by Alan Heeger's Penn Group of "superconducting fluctuations around 60 K" in TTF-TCNQ than my talk. I was just coming off a staff assignment at IBM Research San Jose and had spent a few weeks in the fall of 1972 revisiting some ideas I had on electronic structure of disordered semiconductors while a graduate student in Bill Paul's group at Harvard. It turns out I had "discovered" the formalism for the band structure of quasicrystals. Of course, right after returning home, Rick Greene and I immediately started working on TTF-TCNQ!]
"Monte-Carlo Simulations of Fermions on Quasiperiodic Chains," P. M. Grant, APS March Meeting, 16-20 March 1992, Indianapolis. [From 1982-86, before the eruption of high temperature superconductivity, I collaborated with Doug Scalapino and his students at UCSB involving quantum Monte-Carlo simulations on various "ideal" fermion/spin systems. One of these efforts was a collaboration with Bernd Schuttler on random exchange in AF chains.  We found that long range order in the thermodynamic limit disappeared...not all that surprising. From 1990-92, I spent a sabbatical in Mexico at UNAM and had access to a Cray YMP, and tried the same problem, but not on a random chain, but quasiperiodic. Amazingly, as the chain length increased, the susceptibility seemed to diverge!  This needs to be checked out.]
"Researchers Find Extraordinarily High Temperature Superconductivity in Bio-Inspired Nanopolymer," Paul M. Grant, Physics Today, May 1998. [My whimsical SciFi essay covering the great discovery in 2028 of an embodiment of Bill Little's model of exciton mediated superconductivity. You eventually "get what you need." (see SuperTunes).  Bill's model envisioned a periodic one dimensional metallic "spine" as the carrier of superconductivity. The problem was that Fermi-surface nesting induced CDW instabilities would gap the Fermi level before BCS pairing could yield the lowest energy state.  This "paper" solved that dilemma!]


Anthology Tribute to the "Usual Suspects"
on the Occasion of Portland APS March 2010

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