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VOLUME 31 | ISSUE 5 | PAGE 275
Instability of quasi-one-dimensional electron chain and the "string-zigzag" structural transition
The linear chain of electrons, held on the surface of liquid helium by the field of a charged filament, is unstable with respect to lateral displacements if the density of the system is above some critical value. It is shown that in this case the energy minimum is realized with a zigzag-shaped arrangement of the particles. Estimates show that such structural transition can be detected by modern experimental techniques.