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  • PhysRevLett.112.055504

    Rights statement: © 2014 American Physical Society

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Electron-phonon coupling and the metallization of solid helium at terapascal pressures

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Article number055504
<mark>Journal publication date</mark>7/02/2014
<mark>Journal</mark>Physical review letters
Issue number5
Number of pages5
Publication StatusPublished
<mark>Original language</mark>English


Solid He is studied in the pressure and temperature ranges 1-40 TPa and 0-10 000 K using first-principles methods. Anharmonic vibrational properties are calculated within a self-consistent field framework, including the internal and free energies, density-pressure relation, stress tensor, thermal expansion, and the electron-phonon coupling renormalization of the electronic band gap. We find that an accurate description of electron-phonon coupling requires us to use a nonperturbative approach. The metallization pressure of 32.9 TPa at 0 K is larger than found previously. The vibrational effects are large; for example, at P=30  TPa the band gap is increased by 2.8 eV by electron-phonon coupling and a further 0.1 eV by thermal expansion compared to the static value. The implications of the calculated metallization pressure for the cooling of white dwarfs are discussed.

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© 2014 American Physical Society