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We explore the analogy between two-component quantum alkali-metal gases and spin-polarized helium systems. Recent experiments in trapped gases are put into the frame of the existing theory for the Castaing instability in transverse channels and the formation of homogeneous precessing domains in spin-polarized systems. Analogous effects have already been observed in spin-polarized 3He and 3He−4He mixture systems. The threshold effect of the confining potential on the instability is analyzed. Additional experimental possibilities for the observation of a transverse instability in a trap are discussed.

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© 2002 The American Physical Society