A Pair of 2D Quantum Liquids: Investigating the Phase Behavior of Indirect Excitons

Paul R. Wrona*, Eran Rabani*, Phillip L. Geissler

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Long-lived indirect excitons (IXs) exhibit a rich phase diagram, including a Bose-Einstein condensate (BEC), a Wigner crystal, and other exotic phases. Recent experiments have hinted at a "classical"liquid of IXs above the BEC transition. To uncover the nature of this phase, we use a broad range of theoretical tools and find no evidence of a driving force toward classical condensation. Instead, we attribute the condensed phase to a quantum electron-hole liquid (EHL), first proposed by Keldysh for direct excitons. Taking into account the association of free carriers into bound excitons, we study the phase equilibrium between a gas of excitons, a gas of free carriers, and an EHL for a wide range of electron-hole separations, temperatures, densities, and mass ratios. Our results agree reasonably well with recent measurements of GaAs/AlGaAs coupled quantum wells.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)15339-15346
Number of pages8
JournalACS Nano
Issue number9
StatePublished - 27 Sep 2022


  • Mott transition
  • coupled quantum wells
  • electron-hole liquid
  • indirect exciton
  • phase transition


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