Phase transitions and critical phenomena

Phase transitions and critical phenomena are the changes of a system from one regime or state to another exhibiting very different properties, and the unusual effects that occur on the boundary between them. A change in the state of matter, such as from a solid to a liquid, is a classic example.

Latest Research and Reviews

News and Comment

  • News and Views |

    Experiments show how the magnetic order in antiferromagnets can be manipulated through lattice vibrations excited by a laser. This induces a large and reversible magnetic moment at very high speed.

    • Dominik M. Juraschek
    •  & Prineha Narang
    Nature Physics 16, 900-901
  • News and Views |

    An ultra-cold atomic gas is used to image a phase transition in an iron pnictide with micrometre resolution.

    • James Analytis
    Nature Physics 16, 506-507
  • News and Views |

    Complex contagions — for example when ideas spread across a network — are thought to be different from the simple contagions observed for infections. Simple contagions are now shown to exhibit a key macroscopic characteristic of complex behaviour when they interact.

    • Sune Lehmann
    Nature Physics 16, 377-378
  • News and Views |

    An electoral model predicts that polarized and alienated voters lead to unstable elections, like phase transitions in an Ising model. Such physics-inspired models may help political scientists devise electoral reforms to quench instability.

    • Soren Jordan
    Nature Physics 16, 125-126