Quasiparticles help physicists make sense of the world

Tangible products—like a solar-powered hearing aid—may come from not-so-real particles

dropleton illustration

NOT-SO-REAL PARTICLES  Liquidlike particle clusters called dropletons, illustrated here, are a type of quasiparticle. 

Courtesy of the Cundiff group and Brad Baxley/jila 

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