Supersolidity in Helium : Novel Phase or Quantum Metallurgy?
University of Florida, U.S.A.
A supersolid is a theoretically proposed phase of matter where superfluid and crystalline order can coexist. One of the likely candidates for this is solid 4He. The first experimental evidence of superflow in solid helium was found by Kim and Chan in 2004. Mounting experimental evidence since then however points to the emphatic role played by crystal defects in this phenomenon, and it is not conclusively established that a textbook second order transition takes place . In my talk, I shall first outline the theoretical background and key experimental developments in this field. I shall then talk about the phenomenology of supersolids, and some of the efforts made by our group to model this as an effect of various topological defects, particularly dislocation lines.