The AB Interface in Superfluid 3He as a Simulated Cosmological Brane
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- Bradley, D.I., Fisher, S.N., Guénault, A.M. et al. J Low Temp Phys (2007) 148: 465. doi:10.1007/s10909-007-9415-9
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We present measurements of the transport of superfluid 3He quasiparticle excitations in the ballistic limit at temperatures well below Tc, and an interpretation of unexpected results as an experimental simulation of cosmological processes. Using a variable magnetic field profile we stabilize a layer of A phase across a cylinder of B phase, creating both an AB and a BA interface. These highly ordered interfaces may provide an ideal laboratory analogy for the branes and anti-branes of current cosmology. It has been suggested that brane interaction and annihilation are involved in inflation in the early Universe and leave behind topological defects such as cosmic strings. In our experiments we have annihilated our AB/BA branes by ramping down the magnetic field to remove the A phase layer. We then find that the quasiparticles face an extra impedance owing to defects left behind in the B phase texture. This is the first definitive observation of such a phenomenon.