Vortex physics

Ferroelectrics in a twist

Ferroelectric polarization vortices close to a ferroelectric transition turn out to be striking models of the cosmos in which strings are thought to have condensed out of the rapid expansion of the early Universe.

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Figure 1: Like vortices that form in a liquid, the polarization in ferroelectrics or paraelectrics can spontaneously form thermally excited vortex loops or a forest of vortex lines spanning the entire crystal, which Lin and colleagues1 have been able to map in detail.

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Correspondence to Stephen E. Rowley or Gilbert G. Lonzarich.

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Rowley, S., Lonzarich, G. Ferroelectrics in a twist. Nature Phys 10, 907–908 (2014). https://doi.org/10.1038/nphys3179

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