|abstract ||In the first part of this thesis, we present an inhomogeneous theory for the low-temperature properties of a resonantly interacting Fermi mixture in a trap that goes beyond the local-density approximation. We compare a Bogoliubov-de Gennes and a Landau-Ginzburg approach that both include mean-field-like self-energy effects to account for the strong interactions at unitarity. We conclude that the Landau-Ginzburg approach is more appropriate when dealing with a first-order phase transition. We show diagrammatically how these self-energy effects arise from fluctuations in the superfluid order parameter. Gradient terms of the order parameter are included to account for inhomogeneities. This approach incorporates the state-of-the-art knowledge of the homogeneous mixture with a population imbalance exactly and gives good agreement with the experimental density profiles of Shin et al. [Nature 451, 689 (2008)]. We calculate the universal surface tension due to the observed interface between the equal-density superfluid and the partially polarized normal state of the mixture. We find that the exotic and gapless superfluid Sarma phase can be stabilized at this interface, even when this phase is unstable in the bulk of the gas. We also discuss the possibility of a metastable state to explain the deformation of the superfluid core that is seen in the experiment of Partridge et al. [Science 311, 503 (2006)].
In the second part, we show that a two-channel mean-field theory for a Bose gas near a Feshbach resonance allows for an analytic computation of the chemical potential, and therefore the universal constant β, at unitarity. To improve on this mean-field theory, which physically neglects condensate depletion, we study a variational Jastrow ansatz for the ground-state wavefunction and use the hypernetted-chain (HNC/0) approximation to minimize the energy for all positive values of the scattering length. We also show that other important physical quantities such as Tan's contact and the condensate fraction can be directly obtained from this approach.|