Sixth CSTCP seminar: Hunting excitonic instabilities in low dimensional materials - Dr. Daniele Varsano (Zoom Meeting)

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02/24/2022 - 16:00
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02/24/2022 - 17:00
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As part of the newborn Colloquium Series in Theoretical and Computational Physics (CSTCP) organised at the Physics Department of the University of Trieste, Miramare Campus, we are glad to invite you to the sixth colloquium (leaflet below):

Thursday February 24th 2022 at 16:00
Zoom Meeting
Password: excitons
and Live on Youtube at

Hunting excitonic instabilities in low dimensional materials
Dr. Daniele Varsano (CNR-NANO)

Spontaneous condensation of excitons is a long-sought phenomenon analogous to the condensation of Cooper pairs in a superconductor. It is expected to occur in a semiconductor at thermodynamic equilibrium if the binding energy of the excitons—electron (e) and hole (h) pairs interacting by Coulomb force—overcomes the band gap, giving rise to a new phase: the “excitonic insulator” (EI) [1]. Low dimensional systems are excellent candidates for the EI realization because of reduced Coulomb screening, and indeed a structural phase transition was observed in few-layer systems. However, previous work could not disentangle to which extent the origin of the transition was in the formation of bound excitons or in the softening of a phonon. In this talk I will discuss our theoretical predictions, based on the combination of first-principles and model approaches concerning carbon nanotubes [2], monolayer TMD in the T’ phase (MoS2, WTe2) [3,4] showing that in this system topological and excitonic order cooperatively enhance the bulk gap by breaking the crystal inversion symmetry. Moreover I will also focus on bulk MoS2 demonstrating theoretically that at high pressure it is prone to the condensation of genuine excitons of finite momentum, whereas the phonon dispersion remains regular.

[1] L. V. Keldysh, Y. V. Kopaev, Sov. Phys. Sol. State 6, 2219 (1965) ; W. Kohn, “Metals and insulators” in Many-Body Physics, C. 1967
[2] D. Varsano, S. Sorella, D. Sangalli, M. Barborini, S. Corni, E. Molinari and M. Rontani et al., Nat. Commun. 8, 1461 (2017).
[3] D. Varsano, M. Palummo, E. Molinari, M. Rontani Nat. Nanotechnol. 15, 367–372 (2020) ; B. Sun et al, Nat. Physics 18, 94 (2022)
[4] S. Ataei, D. Varsano, E. Molinari, M. Rontani, PNAS, 118, e2010110118 (2021)

The Colloquium Series in Theoretical and Computational Physics targets the whole physicists community, physics students at all levels are particularly welcomed to attend.

The colloquium will last 45 minutes, followed by 15 minutes of discussion.

Looking forward to seeing you there!

On behalf of the organising committee at the Physics Department UniTS


dr. Antimo Marrazzo

Antimo Marrazzo Physics Department University of Trieste Strada costiera 11 34151 Trieste (Italy)
Last update: 02-25-2022 - 09:58