October 18, 2021
Atomically thin sheets of carbon, called graphene, have caught many scientists' attention in recent years. Researchers have discovered that stacking layers of graphene two or three at a time and twisting the layers opens fertile new territory for them to explore. Research into these stacked sheets of graphene is like the Wild West, complete with the lure of striking gold and the uncertainty of uncharted territory. Researchers at JQI and the Condensed Matter Theory Center (CMTC) at the University of Maryland are busy creating the theoretical physics foundation that will be a map of this new landscape. And there is a lot to map; the phenomena in graphene range from the familiar like magnetism to more exotic things like strange metallicity, different versions of the quantum Hall effect, and the Pomeranchuk effect—each of which involve electrons coordinating to produce unique behaviors. One of the most promising veins for scientific treasure is the appearance of superconductivity (lossless electrical flow) in stacked graphene.