The Hub of Being (20-13) Scale Anomalies: Semiconductors, Photosynthesis


The mathematics within human comprehension only provide a crude view of Nature. Modeling the fundamental interfaces for phase transitions, and between phenomena and noumenon, have proved intractable.

Features at every scale of observable existence are only roughly approximate at another. Sometimes interactions at one scale create anomalies at another.

 Semiconductor Sandwich

Lanthanum aluminate (LaAlO3 (LAO)) and strontium titanate (SrTiO3 (STO)) are 2 mundane semiconductors: putting up a fair amount of resistance to electricity running through them. Neither has magnetic properties. But when LAO and STO are layered together, they become both conductive and magnetic.

At the interface of these 2 materials, elemental units of magnetism – local moments – form. The moments interact with conductive electrons to create a magnetic state which arranges the moments into a peculiar spiral pattern at the ground state. How this quantum phenomenon arises is a mystery.

It’s like taking 2 pieces of bread and putting them together and having the sandwich filling magically appear. ~ Indian American physicist Mohit Randeria


At the ambient scale, photosynthesis is a chemical reaction that produces energy for sunshine autotrophs. The astonishing efficiency of photosynthesis owes entirely to quantum coherence; how it happens is hardly apprehended.

The photosynthetic system of plants is Nature’s most elaborate nanoscale biological machine. ~ Indian molecular biologist K.V. Lakshmi