Australian researchers have found new evidence of a highly unusual quantum state, which could be key to some revolutionary new devices.

The Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation (ANSTO) has experimental evidence of a highly unusual quantum state, a quantum spin liquid (QSL), in a two-dimensional material.

Materials with quantum spin liquid states could be used in the development of spintronic devices, quantum computers and other transformative quantum technologies.

In a quantum spin liquid (QSL) - an elusive state of matter that is the subject of much investigation worldwide - the electron spins in a magnetic material never align but continue to fluctuate even at the lowest temperatures.

This lack of ordered magnetic spin alignment in a solid structure has been described as a fluctuating liquid-like state.

Japanese researchers had previously detected low energy spin excitations, evidence of a QSL, but the expected spin ordering or freezing was not detected.

ANSTO researcher were then able to show the same spin excitations, but also that they persisted to the lowest temperature, which is only slightly above absolute zero.

Other experimental studies, which included magnetic susceptibility, magnetisation, heat capacity  and muon spin relation measurements, also supported the presence of a quantum spin liquid in the material.

The study is accessible here.