Latest Reviews

  • Review Article |

    Economic complexity methods predict changes in the geography of economic activities and explain differences in economic growth, inequality, greenhouse emissions and labour market outcomes. This Review summarizes a decade of research on economic complexity and its applications.

    • César A. Hidalgo
  • Review Article |

    Viruses display fascinating dynamics during their life cycle. Only recently has it become possible to probe viral dynamics at the single-particle level. This Review discusses dynamical properties of viruses and recent developments in physical virology approaches to probe such dynamics.

    • Robijn F. Bruinsma
    • , Gijs J. L. Wuite
    •  & Wouter H. Roos
  • Review Article |

    Strong correlations may produce states of matter that do not have non-interacting counterparts, with new types of quantum criticality, superconductivity, and topological phases being recent highlights. This Review describes the physics underlying these correlated states and points to their potential for quantum applications.

    • Silke Paschen
    •  & Qimiao Si
  • Technical Review |

    Understanding light–matter interactions in layered materials is crucial for applications in photonics and optoelectronics. This Technical Review discusses the optical spectroscopy techniques to access details of the electronic band structure, crystal quality, crystal orientation and spin–valley polarization, including key aspects of practical set-ups to perform experiments for a broad range of applications.

    • Shivangi Shree
    • , Ioannis Paradisanos
    • , Xavier Marie
    • , Cedric Robert
    •  & Bernhard Urbaszek
  • Perspective |

    Transitions between the topologically distinct vacuum sectors induce a chiral asymmetry in hot quark–gluon matter via a process analogous to the baryogenesis in the early Universe. This may soon be detected in heavy-ion collisions through the chiral magnetic effect.

    • Dmitri E. Kharzeev
    •  & Jinfeng Liao
  • Review Article |

    Since the first measurement of the spin structure of the proton, there has been significant theoretical and experimental progress in understanding the origins of the proton spin. This Review discusses what we have learned so far, what is still missing and what to expect from the upcoming experiments.

    • Xiangdong Ji
    • , Feng Yuan
    •  & Yong Zhao
  • Review Article |

    A variety of quantum programming languages have been developed over the past few years, enabling newcomers and seasoned practitioners alike. This Review gives a brief introduction to quantum programming, overviewing some of the existing languages and the ecosystem around them.

    • Bettina Heim
    • , Mathias Soeken
    • , Sarah Marshall
    • , Chris Granade
    • , Martin Roetteler
    • , Alan Geller
    • , Matthias Troyer
    •  & Krysta Svore
  • Review Article |

    The rapidly developing field of topological data analysis represents data via graphs rather than as solutions to equations or as decompositions into clusters. This Review discusses the methods and provides examples from physics and other sciences.

    • Gunnar Carlsson
  • Review Article |

    The past decade has witnessed remarkable progress in our understanding of equilibration, thermalization and prethermalization, due in large part to experimental breakthroughs in ultracold atomic gases. This Review discusses theoretical and experimental advances on these topics and the challenges ahead.

    • Masahito Ueda
  • Review Article |

    Axion fields provide a unique way to understand large quantized electromagnetic responses in topological insulators and dynamics in Weyl semimetals. This Review discusses the theory of axion fields in condensed matter, their experimental realization and their application in next-generation devices.

    • Dennis M. Nenno
    • , Christina A. C. Garcia
    • , Johannes Gooth
    • , Claudia Felser
    •  & Prineha Narang
  • Review Article |

    The charge radius of the proton is controversial because measurements by different methods disagree. Recent results indicate that these measurements might be reconciled. In this Review, we discuss the experimental techniques used to measure the proton radius and describe the current status of the field as well as forthcoming experiments.

    • Jean-Philippe Karr
    • , Dominique Marchand
    •  & Eric Voutier
  • Perspective |

    Designing new experiments in physics is a challenge for humans; therefore, computers have become a tool to expand scientists’ capabilities and to provide creative solutions. This Perspective article examines computer-inspired designs in quantum physics that led to laboratory experiments and inspired new scientific insights.

    • Mario Krenn
    • , Manuel Erhard
    •  & Anton Zeilinger
  • Review Article |

    Holographic duality is an equivalence relation between a gravitational system and a quantum many-body system. The Review discusses various insights obtained from the duality into properties of strongly coupled matter, quantum many-body chaos and deep connections between quantum information and geometry.

    • Hong Liu
    •  & Julian Sonner
  • Review Article |

    The coupling of photons to material quasiparticles such as plasmons, phonons and excitons opens new possibilities in light–matter interactions. This Review presents a generalized view of such quasiparticles and the technique that describes their interactions with matter: macroscopic quantum electrodynamics.

    • Nicholas Rivera
    •  & Ido Kaminer
  • Review Article |

    Topological Majorana bound states have potential for encoding, manipulating and protecting quantum information in condensed-matter systems. This Review discusses emergence and characterization of Majorana bound states in realistic devices based on hybrid semiconducting nanowires and their connection to more conventional Andreev bound states.

    • Elsa Prada
    • , Pablo San-Jose
    • , Michiel W. A. de Moor
    • , Attila Geresdi
    • , Eduardo J. H. Lee
    • , Jelena Klinovaja
    • , Daniel Loss
    • , Jesper Nygård
    • , Ramón Aguado
    •  & Leo P. Kouwenhoven
  • Review Article |

    Ferroelectric and ferroelastic domain walls are 2D topological defects with thicknesses approaching the unit cell level and emergent functional properties. This Review discusses the exotic polarization profiles that arise at domain walls and the fundamental mechanisms responsible for domain-wall conduction.

    • G. F. Nataf
    • , M. Guennou
    • , J. M. Gregg
    • , D. Meier
    • , J. Hlinka
    • , E. K. H. Salje
    •  & J. Kreisel
  • Viewpoint |

    Ten African researchers discuss the varied challenges and opportunities faced by physicists across the continent.

    • Rabia Salihu Sa’id
    • , Ibiyinka Fuwape
    • , Alain Moise Dikandé
    • , Jamal Mimouni
    • , Francis Hasford
    • , Delia Haynes
    • , Igle Gledhill
    • , George Amolo
    • , Omololu Akin-Ojo
    •  & Nashwa Eassa
  • Review Article |

    2D materials host various collective excitations, which either mutate or cease to exist in the bulk. In this Review, we select the most striking properties of 2D plasmons, excitons, phonons and magnons, contrasting them with the bulk versions.

    • Aleksandr Rodin
    • , Maxim Trushin
    • , Alexandra Carvalho
    •  & A. H. Castro Neto
  • Review Article |

    Understanding the behaviour of materials at high pressures and temperatures is of great importance to planetary science and the physics of warm dense matter. This Review addresses the close connection between modelling the interiors of gaseous planets and the high-pressure physics of hydrogen and helium.

    • Ravit Helled
    • , Guglielmo Mazzola
    •  & Ronald Redmer
  • Technical Review |

    Acoustic and optical waves can be used to exert non-contact forces on microscopic and mesoscopic objects. In this Technical Review, we compare and contrast the use of these modalities, or combinations thereof, in terms of sample manipulation and suitability for biomedical studies.

    • Kishan Dholakia
    • , Bruce W. Drinkwater
    •  & Monika Ritsch-Marte
  • Review Article |

    The Kondo insulator samarium hexaboride is the first experimentally demonstrated example of a strongly correlated topological insulator. This article reviews the topological theory and experimental evidence, including a mystery as to the origin of quantum oscillations and their relation to possible unconventional bulk in-gap states.

    • Lu Li
    • , Kai Sun
    • , Cagliyan Kurdak
    •  & J. W. Allen
  • Perspective |

    Magnetic skyrmions, two-dimensional nanometre-scale localized states, are promising candidates for new technological applications. This Perspective surveys the progress in this field and offers a brief, accessible guide to the basic physical principles of magnetic skyrmions.

    • Alexei N. Bogdanov
    •  & Christos Panagopoulos
  • Perspective |

    Neuromorphic computing takes inspiration from the brain to create energy-efficient hardware for information processing, capable of highly sophisticated tasks. Including more physics in the algorithms and nanoscale materials used for computing could have a major impact in this field.

    • Danijela Marković
    • , Alice Mizrahi
    • , Damien Querlioz
    •  & Julie Grollier
  • Viewpoint |

    Over the past 40 years, the quantum Hall effect (QHE) has inspired new theories and led to experimental discoveries in a range of fields going beyond solid-state electronics to photonics and quantum entanglement. In this Viewpoint, physicists reflect on how the QHE has influenced their research.

    • Klaus von Klitzing
    • , Tapash Chakraborty
    • , Philip Kim
    • , Vidya Madhavan
    • , Xi Dai
    • , James McIver
    • , Yoshinori Tokura
    • , Lucile Savary
    • , Daria Smirnova
    • , Ana Maria Rey
    • , Claudia Felser
    • , Johannes Gooth
    •  & Xiaoliang Qi
  • Perspective |

    Droplets in general are multicomponent and experience gradients in concentration, often leading to transport phenomena and phase transitions. This Perspective discusses recent progress on the physicochemical hydrodynamics of such droplet systems and their relevance for many important applications.

    • Detlef Lohse
    •  & Xuehua Zhang
  • Review Article |

    Despite comprising only about 15% of the known molecular inventory of the interstellar medium, molecular ions have an outsized role in driving chemical evolution. This Review examines the advances — and challenges — in laboratory spectroscopy that have enabled the study of ions in space.

    • Brett A. McGuire
    • , Oskar Asvany
    • , Sandra Brünken
    •  & Stephan Schlemmer
  • Technical Review |

    Quantum simulation with ultracold atomic gases is an established platform for investigating complex quantum processes. Focusing on optical lattice experiments, this Technical Review overviews the available tools and their applications to the simulation of solid-state physics problems.

    • Florian Schäfer
    • , Takeshi Fukuhara
    • , Seiji Sugawa
    • , Yosuke Takasu
    •  & Yoshiro Takahashi
  • Review Article |

    The study of higher-dimensional quantum states has seen numerous conceptual and technological developments. This review discusses various techniques for the generation and processing of qudits, which are stored in the momentum, path, time-/frequency-bins, or the orbital angular momentum of photons.

    • Manuel Erhard
    • , Mario Krenn
    •  & Anton Zeilinger
  • Review Article |

    Chemical vapour deposition (CVD) enables the synthesis of high-purity, pinhole-free and conformal polymer thin films. This Review discusses the recent breakthroughs in mechanistically based CVD polymerization processes and designing CVD polymers for a diverse array of applications.

    • Karen K. Gleason
  • Technical Review |

    Quantum technologies require an extremely precise functioning of their components which is ensured by sophisticated tools for device characterization. This Technical Review surveys and assesses the currently available tools according to their overall complexity, information gain, and underlying assumptions.

    • Jens Eisert
    • , Dominik Hangleiter
    • , Nathan Walk
    • , Ingo Roth
    • , Damian Markham
    • , Rhea Parekh
    • , Ulysse Chabaud
    •  & Elham Kashefi
  • Technical Review |

    Methods for measuring stress in living cells, tissues and organs are advancing steadily and are increasingly being used for biomedical applications. In this Review, we discuss the concept of tissue stress and the techniques available to measure it in 2D and 3D cell and tissue cultures and in vivo.

    • Manuel Gómez-González
    • , Ernest Latorre
    • , Marino Arroyo
    •  & Xavier Trepat
  • Technical Review |

    Ion traps enable the precise control and manipulation of the quantum state of a trapped ion. This Technical Review discusses the way in which ion-trap microchips can be fabricated and integrated with advanced on-chip features for implementing practical quantum technologies.

    • Zak David Romaszko
    • , Seokjun Hong
    • , Martin Siegele
    • , Reuben Kahan Puddy
    • , Foni Raphaël Lebrun-Gallagher
    • , Sebastian Weidt
    •  & Winfried Karl Hensinger
  • Viewpoint |

    In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, science is crucial to inform public policy. At the same time, mistrust of scientists and misinformation about scientific facts are rampant. Six scientists, actively involved in outreach, reflect on how to build a better understanding and trust of science.

    • Katherine Mack
    • , Karl Kruszelnicki
    • , Lisa Randall
    • , Jessica Wade
    • , Jim Al-Khalili
    •  & Vlatko Vedral
  • Perspective |

    Non-line-of-sight (NLOS) imaging methods use light scattered from multiple surfaces to reconstruct images of scenes that are hidden by another object. This Perspective summarizes existing NLOS imaging techniques and discusses which directions show most promise for future developments.

    • Daniele Faccio
    • , Andreas Velten
    •  & Gordon Wetzstein
  • Viewpoint |

    As the COVID-19 pandemic continues, mathematical epidemiologists share their views on what models reveal about how the disease has spread, the current state of play and what work still needs to be done.

    • Alessandro Vespignani
    • , Huaiyu Tian
    • , Christopher Dye
    • , James O. Lloyd-Smith
    • , Rosalind M. Eggo
    • , Munik Shrestha
    • , Samuel V. Scarpino
    • , Bernardo Gutierrez
    • , Moritz U. G. Kraemer
    • , Joseph Wu
    • , Kathy Leung
    •  & Gabriel M. Leung
  • Expert Recommendation |

    This Expert Recommendation provides a guide to identifying practical situations where the likelihood ratio test statistic cannot be approximated by a χ2 distribution and proposes adequate solutions.

    • Sara Algeri
    • , Jelle Aalbers
    • , Knut Dundas Morå
    •  & Jan Conrad
  • Technical Review |

    Plasmon-enhanced Raman spectroscopy (PERS) is a highly sensitive technique that can provide molecular fingerprint information. This Technical Review discusses the fundamental principles, advantages and limitations of PERS, key issues in using PERS and interpreting results, and state-of-the-art applications in materials characterization, bioanalysis and the study of surfaces.

    • Xiang Wang
    • , Sheng-Chao Huang
    • , Shu Hu
    • , Sen Yan
    •  & Bin Ren
  • Viewpoint |

    Nine researchers, editors and science communicators share their views about the barriers that Asian scientists encounter in publishing their work and becoming more visible on the international level.

    • Shravan Hanasoge
    • , Noriaki Horiuchi
    • , Congcong Huang
    • , Hepeng Jia
    • , Na Young Kim
    • , Mio Murao
    • , Minah Seo
    • , Rebecca Tan
    •  & Jens Wilkinson
  • Perspective |

    Due to their atomic structure, ultracold alkaline-earth atoms are well suited for quantum simulation and the study of quantum many-body physics. This Perspective overviews the ways to control the interactions between atoms and discusses the new physics that could be uncovered.

    • Ren Zhang
    • , Yanting Cheng
    • , Peng Zhang
    •  & Hui Zhai