Heterogeneous surfaces and superfluid onset

Milton Walter Cole, J. G. Dash, J. A. Herb

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

12 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Nonuniformity of substrate properties can be detected in the physical adsorption of common molecular gases including helium. Effects due to binding-energy variation extend beyond the first adsorbed layer, usually to thicknesses of many layers. We qualitatively describe reasons for this persistence and show how its form and range are related to the spatial variation of the binding energy. Heterogeneity can play an important role in the appearance of superfluidity in thin films of He4. It is argued that heterogeneity has been a more serious perturbation in superfluid-onset experiments than is generally recognized; that heterogeneity can account for the lack of agreement between experiments which use different techniques and/or substrates; that the experimental disagreements have hindered development of a satisfactory theory of superfluidity in thin films. We derive a thermodynamic formula relating the shifts of onset temperature with thickness to the lateral scale of the thickness variations caused by substrate heterogeneity, and illustrate its application in simple examples. The sensitivity of superfluid onset to heterogeneity might be exploited for surface characterization, yielding important information that is not presently obtainable by other methods. As a separate benefit, it can lead to a clearer understanding of superfluidity. Specific experimental tests are suggested.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)163-169
Number of pages7
JournalPhysical Review B
Volume11
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 1975

Fingerprint

Superfluid helium
superfluidity
Binding energy
Substrates
Thin films
Helium
binding energy
Gases
Experiments
Thermodynamics
Adsorption
molecular gases
thin films
nonuniformity
helium
perturbation
thermodynamics
adsorption
sensitivity
shift

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Condensed Matter Physics

Cite this

Cole, M. W., Dash, J. G., & Herb, J. A. (1975). Heterogeneous surfaces and superfluid onset. Physical Review B, 11(1), 163-169. https://doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevB.11.163
Cole, Milton Walter ; Dash, J. G. ; Herb, J. A. / Heterogeneous surfaces and superfluid onset. In: Physical Review B. 1975 ; Vol. 11, No. 1. pp. 163-169.
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Cole, MW, Dash, JG & Herb, JA 1975, 'Heterogeneous surfaces and superfluid onset', Physical Review B, vol. 11, no. 1, pp. 163-169. https://doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevB.11.163

Heterogeneous surfaces and superfluid onset. / Cole, Milton Walter; Dash, J. G.; Herb, J. A.

In: Physical Review B, Vol. 11, No. 1, 01.01.1975, p. 163-169.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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