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Title: Breakdown of Fermi Degeneracy in the Simplest Liquid Metal

Abstract

We are reporting the observation of the breakdown of electrons’ degeneracy and emergence of classical statistics in the simplest element: metallic deuterium. We have studied the optical reflectance, shock velocity, and temperature of dynamically compressed liquid deuterium up to its Fermi temperature $T$$F$. Above the insulator-metal transition, the optical reflectance shows the distinctive temperature-independent resistivity saturation, which is prescribed by Mott’s minimum metallic limit, in agreement with previous experiments. At $T$ > 0.4 $T$$F$, however, the reflectance of metallic deuterium starts to rise with a temperature-dependent slope, consistent with the breakdown of the Fermi surface. The experimentally inferred electron-ion collisional time in this region exhibits the characteristic temperature dependence expected for a classical Landau-Spitzer plasma. Furthermore, our observation of electron degeneracy lifting extends studies of degeneracy to new fermionic species—electron Fermi systems—and offers an invaluable benchmark for quantum statistical models of Coulomb systems over a wide range of temperatures relevant to dense astrophysical objects and ignition physics.

Authors:
 [1];  [1];  [2];  [3];  [1];  [1]
  1. Univ. of Rochester, NY (United States). Lab. for Laser Energetics
  2. Univ. of Rochester, NY (United States). Lab. for Laser Energetics, Dept. of Mechanical Engineering, and Physics and Astronomy
  3. Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (LLNL), Livermore, CA (United States)
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Univ. of Rochester, NY (United States). Lab. for Laser Energetics; Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (LLNL), Livermore, CA (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA); USDOE Office of Science (SC)
OSTI Identifier:
1502463
Alternate Identifier(s):
OSTI ID: 1496909; OSTI ID: 1583036
Report Number(s):
2018-221,1480; LLNL-JRNL-772218
Journal ID: ISSN 0031-9007; PRLTAO; 2018-221, 1480, 2439
Grant/Contract Number:  
NA0001944; AC52-07NA27344; SC0019269
Resource Type:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Physical Review Letters
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 122; Journal Issue: 8; Journal ID: ISSN 0031-9007
Publisher:
American Physical Society (APS)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
72 PHYSICS OF ELEMENTARY PARTICLES AND FIELDS

Citation Formats

Zaghoo, M., Boehly, T. R., Rygg, J. R., Celliers, P. M., Hu, S. X., and Collins, G. W. Breakdown of Fermi Degeneracy in the Simplest Liquid Metal. United States: N. p., 2019. Web. doi:10.1103/PhysRevLett.122.085001.
Zaghoo, M., Boehly, T. R., Rygg, J. R., Celliers, P. M., Hu, S. X., & Collins, G. W. Breakdown of Fermi Degeneracy in the Simplest Liquid Metal. United States. doi:10.1103/PhysRevLett.122.085001.
Zaghoo, M., Boehly, T. R., Rygg, J. R., Celliers, P. M., Hu, S. X., and Collins, G. W. Wed . "Breakdown of Fermi Degeneracy in the Simplest Liquid Metal". United States. doi:10.1103/PhysRevLett.122.085001. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1502463.
@article{osti_1502463,
title = {Breakdown of Fermi Degeneracy in the Simplest Liquid Metal},
author = {Zaghoo, M. and Boehly, T. R. and Rygg, J. R. and Celliers, P. M. and Hu, S. X. and Collins, G. W.},
abstractNote = {We are reporting the observation of the breakdown of electrons’ degeneracy and emergence of classical statistics in the simplest element: metallic deuterium. We have studied the optical reflectance, shock velocity, and temperature of dynamically compressed liquid deuterium up to its Fermi temperature $T$$F$. Above the insulator-metal transition, the optical reflectance shows the distinctive temperature-independent resistivity saturation, which is prescribed by Mott’s minimum metallic limit, in agreement with previous experiments. At $T$ > 0.4 $T$$F$, however, the reflectance of metallic deuterium starts to rise with a temperature-dependent slope, consistent with the breakdown of the Fermi surface. The experimentally inferred electron-ion collisional time in this region exhibits the characteristic temperature dependence expected for a classical Landau-Spitzer plasma. Furthermore, our observation of electron degeneracy lifting extends studies of degeneracy to new fermionic species—electron Fermi systems—and offers an invaluable benchmark for quantum statistical models of Coulomb systems over a wide range of temperatures relevant to dense astrophysical objects and ignition physics.},
doi = {10.1103/PhysRevLett.122.085001},
journal = {Physical Review Letters},
number = 8,
volume = 122,
place = {United States},
year = {2019},
month = {2}
}

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