Volume 11 Issue 7, July 2015

Volume 11 Issue 7

The transition to widespread connectivity in networks is aptly described by concepts borrowed from percolation theory. Attempts to delay the transition with small interventions lead to explosive percolation, with dramatic consequences for the system.Review Article p531IMAGE: RAISSA M. D'SOUZACOVER DESIGN: ALLEN BEATTIE


  • Editorial |

    The general theory of relativity, tested time and time again, is a cornerstone of modern physics — but marrying it with quantum mechanics remains a major challenge.


  • Commentary |

    The history of the fierce opposition met by Einstein's theory of relativity in the 1920s teaches us that public controversies about science are not necessarily settled by sound scientific reasoning.

    • Milena Wazeck


Books and Arts

Research Highlights

News and Views

  • News & Views |

    Quantum many-body systems are often so complex as to be intractable. An algorithm that finds the ground state of any one-dimensional quantum system has now been devised, proving that the many-body problem is tractable for quantum spin chains.

    • Frank Verstraete
  • News & Views |

    The Anderson transition point between localization and diffusion — the mobility edge — has now been directly measured in an ultracold-atom experiment.

    • Laurent Sanchez-Palencia
  • News & Views |

    Certain nodes are influential in spreading information — or infection — across a network. But these nodes need not be those with the most connections, and topology can play a key role, as a 2010 paper in Nature Physics established.

    • Romualdo Pastor-Satorras
  • News & Views |

    High-harmonic spectroscopy is a powerful tool for probing the electronic structure of atoms and molecules in gases. Experiments now show that similar emission from solids has a different origin.

    • Giulio Vampa
    •  & David M. Villeneuve


  • Review Article |

    The transition to widespread connectivity in networks is aptly described by concepts borrowed from percolation theory. Attempts to delay the transition with small interventions lead to explosive percolation, with drastic consequences for the system.

    • Raissa M. D’Souza
    •  & Jan Nagler


  • Letter |

    In a delayed-choice experiment the decision to measure the particle or wave nature comes after the photon enters the interferometer. An atomic version of the experiment provides the same outcome despite the mass and internal structure of the atoms.

    • A. G. Manning
    • , R. I. Khakimov
    • , R. G. Dall
    •  & A. G. Truscott
  • Letter |

    The symmetry of Cooper pairs in iron-based superconductors is an issue under continued investigation. A scanning tunnelling study of Fe(Te,Se) reveals a robust zero-energy bound state, providing evidence for a non-trivial pairing symmetry.

    • J-X. Yin
    • , Zheng Wu
    • , J-H. Wang
    • , Z-Y. Ye
    • , Jing Gong
    • , X-Y. Hou
    • , Lei Shan
    • , Ang Li
    • , X-J. Liang
    • , X-X. Wu
    • , Jian Li
    • , C-S. Ting
    • , Z-Q. Wang
    • , J-P. Hu
    • , P-H. Hor
    • , H. Ding
    •  & S. H. Pan
  • Letter |

    One minute parity lifetimes are reported in a superconducting transistor made of niobium titanite nitride coupled to aluminium contacts even in the presence of small magnetic fields, enabling the braiding of Majorana bound states.

    • David J. van Woerkom
    • , Attila Geresdi
    •  & Leo P. Kouwenhoven
  • Letter |

    The brightest extragalactic black holes emit X-rays with intensities that are thousands of times greater than those from black holes within our Galaxy. However, optical spectra suggest these different sources may be more similar than once thought.

    • Sergei Fabrika
    • , Yoshihiro Ueda
    • , Alexander Vinokurov
    • , Olga Sholukhova
    •  & Megumi Shidatsu


  • Article |

    The mobility edge characterizes the transition from localization to diffusion. This key parameter in Anderson localization was measured for a system of ultracold atoms in a tunable disordered potential created by laser speckles.

    • G. Semeghini
    • , M. Landini
    • , P. Castilho
    • , S. Roy
    • , G. Spagnolli
    • , A. Trenkwalder
    • , M. Fattori
    • , M. Inguscio
    •  & G. Modugno
  • Article |

    Anderson localization has recently attracted renewed interest in strongly correlated quantum systems. Now, local adiabatic manipulations are shown to lead to a nonlocal response, with implications for quantum control in disordered environments.

    • Vedika Khemani
    • , Rahul Nandkishore
    •  & S. L. Sondhi
  • Article |

    Direct measurement of the exciton binding energy shows that the impressive performance of perovskite solar cells arises from the spontaneous generation of free electrons and holes after light absorption.

    • Atsuhiko Miyata
    • , Anatolie Mitioglu
    • , Paulina Plochocka
    • , Oliver Portugall
    • , Jacob Tse-Wei Wang
    • , Samuel D. Stranks
    • , Henry J. Snaith
    •  & Robin J. Nicholas
  • Article |

    A computer based on droplets moving in microfluidic channels requires synchronous manipulation of the droplets. Such synchronous logic is now shown for a system of ferrofluid droplets, with a rotating magnetic field providing the computer clock rate.

    • Georgios Katsikis
    • , James S. Cybulski
    •  & Manu Prakash
  • Article |

    Our understanding of how catastrophe propagates in multi-layered networks relies on theories that apply only to infinite systems. Reducing the interconnected networks to a set of decoupled graphs provides a route to probing finite sizes.

    • Filippo Radicchi


  • Futures |

    A voyage into the unknown.

    • Martin Hayes