Scientists have discovered a new kind of manifestation of magnetic monopoles
Since the 19th century, scientists have begun to notice a striking similarity between the physical laws describing electrical phenomena and the laws describing magnetic phenomena. However, there is only one thing, the absence of which serves as an obstacle to the complete symmetry of the laws – magnetic monopoles. These magnetic monopoles in the form of elementary particles continue to remain elusive to scientists today, but scientists have already created a number of artificial objects that demonstrate some of the properties of magnetic monopoles.
A group of researchers from the Austrian Institute of Science and Technology Austria (IST Austria) was able to demonstrate that droplets of a superfluid liquid, liquid helium, act as magnetic monopoles with respect to molecules immersed in them. Drops of superfluid liquid have been studied by scientists for a very long time, but until recently no one was able to notice their “magnetic feature”.
Working with electrical charges, it is easy enough to separate their positive and negative poles. A negatively charged electron is precisely the negative pole, and a positively charged proton is positive. Each of these poles is a separate physical particle that can be separated from each other. With magnets, everything looks much more complicated, if you take one magnet and divide it into two parts, then we get two magnets with two poles. In other words, it is fundamentally impossible to physically separate a magnet into two, which have only one of the poles.
Bewildered by the mystery of the properties of magnets, scientists have created artificial systems and ordered crystal structures that act like magnetic monopoles. At one time, a group of theoretical physicists and mathematicians showed that the same phenomenon can occur in molecular systems, including systems of natural origin.
Such systems include droplets of a superfluid liquid, the sizes of which are calculated in nanometers. To describe the unusual properties of such systems, the concept of a quasiparticle, called angulon, was even introduced, the existence of which explains some of the experimental data collected by scientists over the past 20 years.
“Other scientists have been trying all the time to create artificial systems that are magnetic monopoles,” the researchers write. “In our case, the situation is quite the opposite, this system, a droplet of superfluid liquid, has been known and studied for a long time. Scientists have already well studied the processes of rotation of molecules in such drops, but only now we realized that a drop is and has always been a magnetic monopole, which determined some of the characteristic features of its behavior. ”
According to scientists, their discovery opens up a wide range of opportunities for a detailed study of magnetic monopoles. The only snag in this matter is that the manifestations of a magnetic monopole in a droplet of superfluid liquid are fundamentally different from the manifestations of magnetic monopoles in other systems.
“The main difference is that we are dealing with a chemical solution. Our magnetic monopoles are formed in a liquid, not in a solid material “- says Professor Mikhail Lemeshko,” On the one hand, this makes it difficult, and on the other, it greatly facilitates the study of this unique phenomenon. ”