Experimental Study of the Exciton Gas-Liquid Transition in Coupled Quantum Wells

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We study the exciton gas-liquid transition in GaAs/AlGaAs coupled quantum wells. Below a critical temperature, T-C = 4.8 K, and above a threshold laser power density the system undergoes a phase transition into a liquid state. We determine the density-temperature phase diagram over the temperature range 0.1-4.8 K. We find that the latent heat increases linearly with temperature at T less than or similar to 1.1 K, similarly to a Bose-Einstein condensate transition, and becomes constant at 1.1 less than or similar to T < 4.8 K. Resonant Rayleigh scattering measurements reveal that the disorder in the sample is strongly suppressed and the diffusion coefficient sharply increases with decreasing temperature at T < T-C, allowing the liquid to spread over large distances away from the excitation region. We suggest that our findings are manifestations of a quantum liquid behavior.
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