NUCLEATION OF VORTEX RINGS
This chapter examines the wealth of experiments on the nucleation of vortex rings in the vicinity of the giant discontinuity. The nucleation in pure superfluid and in dilute isotopic mixtures has been investigated and three main models have been theoretically developed to interpret the experimental data: the peeling, the girdling, and the fluctuation models. The effects of isotopic impurities, high fields, and high pressures have been investigated and the results are described. The more recent experiments have elucidated the mechanisms of vortex nucleation, including the roton emission at velocities exceeding the Landau critical velocity and the possibility of macroscopic quantum tunnelling over a barrier. The enormous influence of isotopic impurities is also described.
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