Nuclear Condensation of Dense Helium

Evan Berkowitz, University of Maryland
April 23, 2013, 3:30 pm

When a large quantity of helium atoms are compressed so much that their electrons become degenerate and the inter-nucleus spacing is much smaller than a Bohr radius the nuclei can Bose condense. Appropriate conditions might arise, for example, in helium white dwarfs. This condensed phase has a number of interesting features, including an unusual gapless quasiparticle. I will discuss the regime in which this phase is expected, its spectrum, and potential astrophysical signatures.