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Conformal field theory in the laboratory: quantum dots, Kondo effect, non-Fermi liquids and all that

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Boundary conformal field theory finds applications not only to high energy physics but also to condensed matter systems containing quantum impurities, whose world lines can sometimes be modelled as boundaries of 2-dimensional space-time. This technique leads to exact predictions for the low temperature behaviour of gated semi-conductor quantum dot devices which have been recently confirmed experimentally. I will give a non-technical overview of both the theory and the experiments.