1. General Seminars

A new approach to the physics of complex systems

by Philip Turner (Edinburgh Napier University UK)

Aula Bruno Touschek (LNF INFN)

Aula Bruno Touschek


Recent theoretical developments highlight a set of shared principles underpinning macroscopic quantum coherence in high temperature superconducting (HTSC) materials and the emergence of long-range order and macroscopic quantum coherence phenomena such as photosynthesis in biological structures. Preliminary investigations suggest that the emergence of functionality and structure in these systems is driven by dissipative processes, which lead to fractal assembly and a fractal network of charges (with associated quantum potentials) at the molecular scale. At critical levels of charge density and fractal dimension, a percolation threshold is reached where individual quantum potentials merge to form an infinitely interconnected `charged-induced' macroscopic quantum potential (MQP), which can be viewed as a macroscopic path integral. The process by which a MQP acts as a structuring force (in competition with environmental perturbation) dictating the emergence of structure and function in biological and inorganic systems will be described within the context of a new set of macroscopic quantum mechanics processes. Specific issues to be highlighted include the emergence of different phases (coherent electron pairs, Charge Density Waves and Spin Density Waves) observed in complex HTSC materials. The macroscopic quantum processes that underpin these different phenomena will be compared and contrasted with standard quantum mechanics to highlight the extent of commonality (and key differences) between the two quantum systems. Within the context of these new theoretical developments we consider a new experimental approach to the development of inorganic structures and macroscopic coherent systems, analogous to those emerging through biological processes. It is anticipated that this work will lead to new insights into the physics of living organisms and a new approach to deconstructing the role of the genome in defining their structure and function. If new theoretical developments can be validated, they will also open up a new first principles approach to the systematic improvement of critical temperatures in HTSC materials, which has until now followed an empirical approach. Success in this field would in turn support the development of alternative technologies dependent on macroscopic quantum coherence such as quantum computing