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- Ab-Initio simulations of pressure effects on structural and electronic properties of iron based superconductors (2014)
- The ab-initio molecular dynamics framework has been the cornerstone of computational solid state physics in the last few decades. Although it is already a mature field it is still rapidly developing to accommodate the growth in solid state research as well as to efficiently utilize the increase in computing power. Starting from the first principles, the ab-initio molecular dynamics provides essential information about structural and electronic properties of matter under various external conditions. In this thesis we use the ab-initio molecular dynamics to study the behavior of BaFe2As2 and CaFe2As2 under the application of external pressure. BaFe2As2 and CaFe2As2 belong to the family of iron based superconductors which are a novel and promising superconducting materials. The application of pressure is one of two key methods by which electronic and structural properties of iron based superconductors can be modified, the other one being doping (or chemical pressure). In particular, it has been noted that pressure conditions have an important effect, but their exact role is not fully understood. To better understand the effect of different pressure conditions we have performed a series of ab-initio simulations of pressure application. In order to apply the pressure with arbitrary stress tensor we have developed a method based on the Fast Inertial Relaxation Engine, whereby the unit cell and the atomic positions are evolved according to the metadynamical equations of motion. We have found that the application of hydrostatic and c axis uniaxial pressure induces a phase transition from the magnetically ordered orthorhombic phase to the non-magnetic collapsed tetragonal phase in both BaFe2As2 and CaFe2As2. In the case of BaFe2As2, an intermediate tetragonal non-magnetic tetragonal phase is observed in addition. Application of the uniaxial pressure parallel to the c axis reduces the critical pressure of the phase transition by an order of magnitude, in agreement with the experimental findings. The in-plane pressure application did not result in transition to the non-magnetic tetragonal phase and instead, rotation of the magnetic order direction could be observed. This is discussed in the context of Ginzburg-Landau theory. We have also found that the magnetostructural phase transition is accompanied by a change in the Fermi surface topology, whereby the hole cylinders centered around the Gamma point disappear, restricting the possible Cooper pair scattering channels in the tetragonal phase. Our calculations also permit us to estimate the bulk moduli and the orthorhombic elastic constants of BaFe2As2 and CaFe2As2. To study the electronic structure in systems with broken translational symmetry, such as doped iron based superconductors, it is necessary to develop a method to unfold the complicated bandstructures arising from the supercell calculations. In this thesis we present the unfolding method based on group theoretical techniques. We achieve the unfolding by employing induced irreducible representations of space groups. The unique feature of our method is that it treats the point group operations on an equal footing with the translations. This permits us to unfold the bandstructures beyond the limit of translation symmetry and also formulate the tight-binding models of reduced dimensionality if certain conditions are met. Inclusion of point group operations in the unfolding formalism allows us to reach important conclusions about the two versus one iron picture in iron based superconductors. And finally, we present the results of ab-initio structure prediction in the cases of giant volume collapse in MnS2 and alkaline doped picene. In the case of MnS2, a previously unobserved high pressure arsenopyrite structure of MnS2 is predicted and stability regions for the two competing metastable phases under pressure are determined. In the case of alkaline doped picene, crystal structures with different levels of doping were predicted and used to study the role of electronic correlations.

- Aspects of electron correlations in two-dimensional metals (2015)
- Landau's Fermi liquid theory has been the main tool for investigating interactions between fermions at low energies for more than 50 years. It has been successful in describing, amongst other things, the mass enhancement in ³He and the thermodynamics of a large class of metals. Whilst this in itself is remarkable given the phenomenological nature of the original theory, experiments have found several materials, such as some superconducting and heavy-fermion materials, which cannot be described within the Fermi liquid picture. Because of this, many attempts have been made to understand these ''non Fermi liquid'' phases from a theoretical perspective. This will be the broad topic of the first part of this thesis and will be investigated in Chapter 2, where we consider a two-dimensional system of electrons interacting close to a Fermi surface through a damped gapless bosonic field. Such systems are known to give rise to non Fermi liquid behaviour. In particular we will consider the Ising-nematic quantum critical point of a two-dimensional metal. At this quantum critical point the Fermi liquid theory breaks down and the fermionic self-energy acquires the non Fermi liquid like {omega}²/³ frequency dependence at lowest order and within the canonical Hertz-Millis approach to quantum criticality of interacting fermions. Previous studies have however shown that, due to the gapless nature of the electronic single-particle excitations, the exponent of 2/3 is modified by an anomalous dimension {eta_psi} which changes, not only the exponent of the frequency dependence, but also the exponent of the momentum dependence of the self-energy. These studies also show that the usual 1/N-expansion breaks down for this problem. We therefore develop an alternative approach to calculate the anomalous dimensions based on the functional renormalization group, which will be introduced in the introductory Chapter 1. Doing so we will be able to calculate both the anomalous dimension renormalizing the exponent of the frequency dependence and the exponent renormalizing the momentum dependence of the self-energy. Moreover we will see that an effective interaction between the bosonic fields, mediated by the fermions, is crucial in order to obtain these renormalizations. In the second part of this thesis, presented in Chapter 3, we return to Fermi liquid theory itself. Indeed, despite its conceptual simplicity of expressing interacting electrons through long-lived quasi-particles which behave in a similar fashion as free particles, albeit with renormalized parameters, it remains an active area of research. In particular, in order to take into account the full effects of interactions between quasi-particles, it is crucial to consider specific microscopic models. One such effect, which is not captured by the phenomenological theory itself, is the appearance of non-analytic terms in the expansions of various thermodynamic quantities such as heat-capacity and susceptibility with respect to an external magnetic field, temperature, or momentum. Such non-analyticities may have a large impact on the phase diagram of, for example, itinerant electrons near a ferromagnetic quantum phase transition. Inspired by this we consider a system of interacting electrons in a weak external magnetic field within Fermi liquid theory. For this system we calculate various quasi-particle properties such as the quasi-particle residue, momentum-renormalization factor, and a renormalization factor which relates to the self-energy on the Fermi surface. From these renormalization factors we then extract physical quantities such as the renormalized mass and renormalized electron Lande g-factor. By calculating the renormalization factors within second order perturbation theory numerically and analytically, using a phase-space decomposition, we show that all renormalization factors acquire a non-analytic term proportional to the absolute value of the magnetic field. We moreover explicitly calculate the prefactors of these terms and find that they are all universal and determined by low-energy scattering processes which we classify. We also consider the non-analytic contributions to the same renormalization factors at finite temperatures and for finite external frequencies and discuss possible experimental ways of measuring the prefactors. Specifically we find that the tunnelling density of states and the conductivity acquire a non-analytic dependence on magnetic field (and temperature) coming from the momentum-renormalization factor. For the latter we discuss how this relates to previous works which show the existence of non-analyticities in the conductivity at first order in the interaction.

- Transmission grid extensions in renewable electricity systems (2014)
- The present work deals with the integration of variable renewable energy sources, wind and solar energy into the European and US power grid. In contrast to other networks, such as the gas supply mains, the electricity network is practically not able to store energy. Generation and consumption therefore always have tobe balanced. Currently, the load curve is viewed as a rigid boundary condition, which must be followed by the generation system. The basic idea of the approach followed here is that weather-dependent generation causes a shift of focus of the electricity supply. At high shares of wind and solar generation, the role of the rigid boundary condition falls to the residual load, that is, the remaining load after subtraction of renewable generation. The goal is to include the weather dependence as well as the load curve in the design of the future electricity supply. After a brief introduction, the present work first turns to the underlying weather-, generation and load data, which form the starting point of the analysis. In addition, some basic concepts of energy economics are discussed, which are needed in the following. In the main part of the thesis, several algorithms are developed to determine the load flow in a network with a high share of wind and solar energy and to determine the backup supply needed at the same time. Minimization of the energy needed from controllable power plants, the capacity variable power plants, and the capacity of storing serve as guiding principles. In addition, the optimization problem of grid extensions is considered. It is shown that it can be formulated as a convex optimization problem. It turns out that with an optimized, international transmission network which is about four times the currently available transmission capacity, much of the potential savings in backup energy (about 40%) in Europe can be reached. In contrast, a twelvefold increase the transmission capacity would be necessary for a complete implementation of all possible savings in dispatchable power plants. The reduction of the dispatchable generation capacity and storage capacity, however, presents a greater challenge. Due to correlations in the generation of time series of individual countries, it may be reduced only with difficulty, and by only about 30%. In the following, the influence of the relative share of wind and solar energy is illuminated and examined the interplay with the line capacitance. A stronger transmission network tends to lead to a higher proportion of wind energy being better integrated. With increasing line capacity, the optimal mix in Europe therefore shifts from about 70% to 80% wind. Similar analyses are carried out for the US with comparable results. In addition, the cost of the overall system can be reduced. It is interesting at this point that the advantages for the network integration may outweigh higher production costs of individual technologies, so that it is more favourable from the viewpoint of the entire system to use the more expensive technologies. Finally, attention is given to the flexibility of the dispatchable power plants. Starting from a Fourier-like decomposition of the load curve as it was a few years ago, when hardly renewable generation capacity was present, capacities of different flexibility classes of dispatchable power plant are calculated. For this purpose, it is assumed that the power plant park is able to follow the load curve without significant surplusses or deficits. From this examination, it is derived what capacity must at least be available without having to resort to a detailed database of existing power plants. Assuming a strong European cooperation, with a stronger international transmission network, the dispatchable power capacity can be significantly reduced while maintaining security of supply and generating relatively small surplusses in dispatchable power plants.

- Tests erweiterter Kerr- und Schwarzschild-Metriken im Rahmen der Beschreibung von Teilchenorbits, Akkretionsscheiben und Gravitationswellen (2015)
- Im Rahmen dieser Arbeit werden verschiedene Modellsysteme untersucht, die Metriken der klassischen Allgemeinen Relativitätstheorie mit Erweiterungen vergleichen, in denen Ereignishorizonte nicht existieren müssen. Die untersuchten Korrekturterme sind durch Schwachfeldmessungen, wie sie zum Beispiel in unserem Sonnensystem durchgeführt werden, nicht überprüfbar. Es ist deshalb nötig solche Systeme zu betrachten, in denen die vollständigen Gleichungen berücksichtigt werden müssen und keine Entwicklungen für schwache Felder gemacht werden können. Es gibt eine Reihe von astrophysikalischen Systemen, die diese Bedingungen erfüllen, wie das Galaktische Zentrum oder Doppelsternsysteme. Im zweiten Kapitel der Arbeit werden Testteilchenorbits in einem Zentralpotential beschrieben und Unterschiede zwischen der klassischen und einer modifizierten Kerr-Metrik herausgearbeitet. Drei neue Phänomene der modifizierten Metrik gegenüber der Klassischen treten hier in Erscheinung. Zum einen haben Teilchen, die sich auf prograden Bahnen um den Zentralkörper drehen, ein Maximum in ihrer Winkelgeschwindigkeit. Zum anderen ist das Phänomen des frame-draggings deutlich schwächer ausgeprägt. Schließlich tritt ein letzter stabiler Orbit für entsprechend schnell rotierende Zentralkörper nicht mehr auf. Gleichzeitig sind die Unterschiede in den beiden Metriken für große Abstände (r > 10m) nahezu vernachlässigbar. In Kapitel 3 werden diese Ergebnisse auf zwei unterschiedliche Modelle zur Beschreibung von Akkretionsscheiben angewendet. Untersucht wird zum einen das Verhalten der Eisen-Kα-Emissionslinie und zum anderen der Energiefluss aus einer Akkretionsscheibe. In der Form der Eisen-Kα-Emissionslinie gibt es eine deutliche Zunahme des rotverschobenen Anteils der Strahlung in der modifizierten Kerr-Metrik gegenüber der klassischen Kerr-Metrik. Die Akkretionsscheibe nach Page und Thorne zeigt unter Verwendung der modifizierten Kerr-Metrik eine signifikante Erhöhung der abgestrahlten Energie, wenn der Zentralkörper so schnell rotiert, dass kein letzter stabiler Orbit mehr auftritt. Zusätzlich gibt es hier in der Scheibe einen dunklen Ring im Vergleich zu den Bildern höherer Ordnung, die in der klassischen Kerr-Metrik auftreten. Erklärbar sind diese Phänomene dadurch, dass sich Teilchen auf stabilen Bahnen in der modifizierten Kerr-Metrik näher an den Zentralkörper heran bewegen können, als es in der klassischen Kerr-Metrik der Fall ist. Die Rotverschiebung ist für beide Fälle annäherend gleich. Kapitel 4 gibt eine kurze Einführung in die Beschreibung von Gravitationswellen im Rahmen der linearisierten Allgemeinen Relativitätstheorie. Hier wird als Modell ein Binärsystem, wie etwa der Hulse-Taylor-Pulsar, betrachtet. Die Unterschiede zwischen der klassischen Theorie und einer Beschreibung unter Hinzunahme von Zusatztermen sind hier erwartungsgemäß sehr gering, da die Linearisierung der Gleichungen dazu führt, dass Starkfeldeffekte vernachlässigt werden. Für große Abstände, was in diesem Fall auch schwache Felder impliziert, sind die Erweiterungen der Gleichungen vernachlässigbar. Hier werden zum Teil auch Effekte in der klassischen ART vernachlässigt. In Kapitel 5 befindet sich ein kurzer Ausblick in die 3+1-Formulierung der Einsteingleichungen für die numerische Beschreibung von Gravitationsphänomenen. Diese Beschreibung ermöglicht es auch komplexe Systeme ohne viele nähernde Annahmen genau beschreiben zu können. Diese Systeme können zum einen Akkretionsscheiben um kompakte Objekte sein, aber auch die Verschmelzung von zwei massiven Objekten und die damit verbundenen Gravitationswellensignale. Dadurch lassen sich die Vorhersagen der ART oder etwaiger Erweiterungen präziser modellieren. Die vorgestellten Ergebnisse liegen innerhalb der Einschränkungen durch aktuelle Messungen. Zukünftige Messungen wie genauere Beobachtungen des Galaktischen Zentrums durch das Event Horizon Telescope sind aber voraussichtlich dazu in der Lage zwischen den untersuchten Metriken zu unterscheiden.

- Chopping and transport of high-intensity ion beams (2014)
- In this thesis, a novel 257 kHz chopper device was numerically developed, technically designed and experimentally commissioned; a 4-solenoid, low-energy ion beam transport line was numerically investigated, installed and experimentally commissioned; and a novel massless beam-separation system was numerically developed. The chopper combines a pulsed electric field with a static magnetic field in an ExB or Wien-filter type field configuration. Chopped beam pulses with a 257 kHz repetition rate and rise times of 110 ns were experimentally achieved using a 14 keV helium beam. Due to the achieved results, the complete LEBT line for the future Frankfurt Neutron Source FRANZ is ready to deliver a dc or a pulsed beam. At the same time, the LEBT section represents an attractive test stand for the study of low-energy ion beams. It combines magnetic lenses, which allow space-charge compensated beam transport, and a chopper system capable of producing short beam pulses in the hundred nanosecond range. Since these beam pulses are transported onwards, their longitudinal and transverse properties can be analyzed. The pulse duration and time of flight are well below the rise time for the space-charge compensation through residual gas ionization. This opens the possibility for dedicated investigations of the transport of short, low-energy beam pulses including longitudinal and transverse space-charge effects and of relevant issues like the dynamics of space-charge compensation and electron effects in short pulses.

- Development of specially shaped laser beams for the optimized acceleration of particles (2014)
- The laser-driven acceleration of protons from thin foils irradiated by hollow high-intensity laser beams in the regime of target normal sheath acceleration is reported for the first time. The use of hollow beams aims at reducing the initial emission solid angle of the TNSA source, due to a flattening of the electron sheath at the target rear side. The experiments were conducted at the PHELIX laser facility at the GSI Helmholtzzentrum für Schwerionenforschung GmbH with laser intensities in the range from 10^18 to 10^20 W/cm^2. We observed an average reduction of the half opening angle by (3.07±0.42)° or (13.2±2)% when the targets have a thickness between 12 to 14 μm. In addition, the highest proton energies were achieved with the hollow laser beam in comparison to the typical Gaussian focal spot.

- Lattice QCD at finite temperature with Wilson fermions (2014)
- The subatomic world is governed by the strong interactions of quarks and gluons, described by Quantum Chromodynamics (QCD). Quarks experience confinement into colour-less objects, i.e. they can not be observed as free particles. Under extreme conditions such as high temperature or high density, this constraint softens and a transition to a phase where quarks and gluons are quasi-free particles (Quark-Gluon-Plasma) can occur. This environment resembles the conditions prevailing during the early stages of the universe shortly after the Big Bang. The phase diagram of QCD is under investigation in current and future collider experiments, for example at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) or at the Facility for Antiproton and Ion Research (FAIR). Due to the strength of the strong interactions in the energy regime of interest, analytic methods can not be applied rigorously. The only tool to study QCD from first principles is given by simulations of its discretised version, Lattice QCD (LQCD). These simulations are in the high-performance computing area, hence, the numerical aspects of LQCD are a vital part in this field of research. In recent years, Graphic Processing Units (GPUs) have been incorporated in these simulations as they are a standard tool for general purpose calculations today. In the course of this thesis, the LQCD application cl2qcd has been developed, which allows for simulations on GPUs as well as on traditional CPUs, as it is based on OpenCL. cl2qcd constitutes the first application for Wilson type fermions in OpenCL. It provides excellent performance and has been applied in physics studies presented in this thesis. The investigation of the QCD phase diagram is hampered by the notorious sign-problem, which restricts current simulation algorithms to small values of the chemical potential. Theoretically, studying unphysical parameter ranges allows for constraints on the phase diagram. Of utmost importance is the clarification of the order of the finite temperature transition in the Nf=2 chiral limit at zero chemical potential. It is not known if it is of first or second order. To this end, simulations utilising Twisted Mass Wilson fermions aiming at the chiral limit are presented in this thesis. Another possibility is the investigation of QCD at purely imaginary chemical potential. In this region, QCD is known to posses a rich phase structure, which can be used to constrain the phase diagram of QCD at real chemical potential and to clarify the nature of the Nf=2 chiral limit. This phase structure is studied within this thesis, in particular the nature of the Roberge-Weiss endpoint is mapped out using Wilson fermions.

- Time-resolved crystallization of deeply cooled liquid hydrogen isotopes (2014)
- This thesis serves two main purposes: 1. The introduction of a novel experimental method to investigate phase change dynamics of supercooled liquids 2. First-time measurements for the crystallization behaviour for hydrogen isotopes under various conditions 1) The new method is established by the synergy of a liquid microjet of ~ 5 µm diameter and a scattering technique with high spatial resolution, here linear Raman spectroscopy. Due to the high directional stability and the known velocity of the liquid filament, its traveling axis corresponds to a time axis static in space. Utilizing evaporative cooling in a vacuum environment, the propagating liquid cools down rapidly and eventually experiences a phase transition to the crystalline state. This temporal evolution is probed along the filament axis, ultimately resulting in a time resolution of 10 ns. The feasibility of this approach is proven successfully within the following experiments. 2) A main object of study are para-hydrogen liquid filaments. Raman spectra reveal a temperature gradient of the liquid across the filament. This behaviour can quantitatively be reconstructed by numerical simulations using a layered model and is rooted in the effectiveness of evaporative cooling on the surface and a finite thermal conductivity. The deepest supercoolings achieved are ~ 30% below the melting point, at which the filament starts to solidify from the surface towards the core. With a crystal growth velocity extracted from the data the appropriate growth mechanism is identified. The crystal structure that initially forms is metastable and probably the result of Ostwald’s rule of stages. Indications for a transition within the solid towards the stable equilibrium phase support this interpretation. The analog isotope ortho-deuterium is evidenced to behave qualitatively similar with quantitative differences being mass related. In further measurements, isotopic mixtures of para-hydrogen and ortho-deuterium are investigated. It is found that the crystallization process starts earlier and lasts significantly longer compared to the pure substances with the maximum values between 20-50% ortho-deuterium content. A solely temperature based explanation for this effect can be excluded. The difference in the quantum character and hence effective size of the isotopes suggests a strong influence of the progressing liquid-solid-interface. Small dilutions of each para-hydrogen and ortho-deuterium with neon show an even more extended crystallization process compared to above isotopic mixtures. Additionally, the crystal is strongly altered in favor of the equilibrium lattice structure of neon.