Physics of our days

A tangle of fractal fibers as a new state of matter

Joint Institute for High Temperatures, Russian Academy of Sciences, ul. Izhorskaya 13/19, Moscow, 127412, Russian Federation

A system of fractal fibers (a fractal tangle) is formed as a result of evaporation of a weakly ionized atomic vapor from a surface in an external electric field. A fractal tangle has the density of a gas but the behavior of a liquid or solid. The tangle-globule phase transition in this system is similar to the transition in a long polymer fiber with self-intersections. The explosive nature of a fractal tangle is due to its high surface energy, since the system consists of nanometer particles and a significant fraction of the molecules are on the surfaces of the particles. An explosion of a fractal tangle is accompanied by a large number of thermal waves propagating along individual fractal fibers. The result is a large number of hot spots moving inside the system. There is a connection between fractal tangles and ball lightning.

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Fulltext is also available at DOI: 10.1070/PU1991v034n08ABEH002465
PACS: 64.60.Ak, 64.70.Kb (all)
DOI: 10.1070/PU1991v034n08ABEH002465
Citation: Smirnov B M "A tangle of fractal fibers as a new state of matter" Sov. Phys. Usp. 34 (8) 711–716 (1991)
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Оригинал: Смирнов Б М «Фрактальный клубок — новое состояние вещества» УФН 161 (8) 141–153 (1991); DOI: 10.3367/UFNr.0161.199108e.0141

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