Reviews of topical problems

Critical points of condensation in Coulomb systems

Institute for Theoretical and Applied Electrodynamics, Russian Academy of Sciences, ul. Izhorskaya 13/19, Moscow, 127412, Russian Federation

The critical points of condensation in Coulomb systems are described here by a modified van der Waals equation of state taking into account a many-particle exchange interaction between virtual atoms with overlapping classically accessible spheres of valence electrons. A characteristic feature of the Coulomb critical points is strong electron-ion coupling caused by the proximity to the metal-insulator transition. We consider a cell model of the exchange interaction of virtual atoms and examples of Coulomb critical points in a system of charged hard spheres, in alkali metals, in metal-ammonia solutions, and in excitonic systems. The Coulomb critical point parameters of transition metals are determined. We consider examples of insulator-metal transitions in semiconducting and dielectric fluids which form the Coulomb systems only in the liquid phase, and discuss a semiconducting critical state of mercury.

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Fulltext is also available at DOI: 10.1070/PU2000v043n08ABEH000792
PACS: 64.70.Fx, 71.30.+h, 71.35.Ee (all)
DOI: 10.1070/PU2000v043n08ABEH000792
Citation: Likal’ter A A "Critical points of condensation in Coulomb systems" Phys. Usp. 43 777–797 (2000)
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Оригинал: Ликальтер А А «Критические точки конденсации в кулоновских системах» УФН 170 831–854 (2000); DOI: 10.3367/UFNr.0170.200008b.0831

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