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Beilstein J Nanotechnol. 2012; 3: 493–500.
Published online 2012 July 6. doi:  10.3762/bjnano.3.56
PMCID: PMC3458593

P-wave Cooper pair splitting

A S Sidorenko, Associate Editor


Background: Splitting of Cooper pairs has recently been realized experimentally for s-wave Cooper pairs. A split Cooper pair represents an entangled two-electron pair state, which has possible application in on-chip quantum computation. Likewise the spin-activity of interfaces in nanoscale tunnel junctions has been investigated theoretically and experimentally in recent years. However, the possible implications of spin-active interfaces in Cooper pair splitters so far have not been investigated.

Results: We analyze the current and the cross correlation of currents in a superconductor–ferromagnet beam splitter, including spin-active scattering. Using the Hamiltonian formalism, we calculate the cumulant-generating function of charge transfer. As a first step, we discuss characteristics of the conductance for crossed Andreev reflection in superconductor–ferromagnet beam splitters with s-wave and p-wave superconductors and no spin-active scattering. In a second step, we consider spin-active scattering and show how to realize p-wave splitting using only an s-wave superconductor, through the process of spin-flipped crossed Andreev reflection. We present results for the conductance and cross correlations.

Conclusion: Spin-activity of interfaces in Cooper pair splitters allows for new features in ordinary s-wave Cooper pair splitters, that can otherwise only be realized by using p-wave superconductors. In particular, it provides access to Bell states that are different from the typical spin singlet state.

Keywords: Cooper pair splitting, entanglement, Hamiltonian approach, spin-active scattering, superconductivity


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Articles from Beilstein Journal of Nanotechnology are provided here courtesy of Beilstein-Institut