Conventional spin-singlet Cooper pairs convert into spin-triplet pairs in ferromagnetic Josephson junctions in which the superconductor/ferromagnet interfaces (S/F) are magnetically inhomogeneous. Although much of the theoretical work describing this triplet proximity effect has considered ideal junctions with magnetic domain walls (DW) at the interfaces, in practice it is not easily possible to isolate a DW and propagate a supercurrent through it. The rare-earth magnet Gd can form a field-tuneable in-plane Bloch DW if grown between non-co-linearly aligned ferromagnets. Here we report supercurrents through magnetic Ni-Gd-Ni nanopillars: by field annealing at room temperature, we are able to modify the low temperature DW-state in Gd and this result has a striking effect on the junction supercurrent at 4.2 K. We argue that this result can only be explained in terms of the interconversion of triplet and singlet pairs, the efficiency of which depends on the magnetic helicity of the structure.
Using the nonequilibrium Green’s function method, we theoretically study the Andreev reflection(AR) in a four-terminal Aharonov-Bohm interferometer containing a coupled double quantum dot with the Rashba spin-orbit interaction (RSOI) and the coherent indirect coupling via two ferromagnetic leads. When two ferromagnetic electrodes are in the parallel configuration, the spin-up conductance is equal to the spin-down conductance due to the absence of the RSOI. However, for the antiparallel alignment, the spin-polarized AR occurs resulting from the crossed AR (CAR) and the RSOI. The effects of the coherent indirect coupling, RSOI, and magnetic flux on the Andreev-reflected tunneling magnetoresistance are analyzed at length. The spin-related current is calculated, and a distinct swap effect emerges. Furthermore, the pure spin current can be generated due to the CAR when two ferromagnets become two half metals. It is found that the strong RSOI and the large indirect coupling are in favor of the CAR and the production of the strong spin current. The properties of the spin-related current are tunable in terms of the external parameters. Our results offer new ways to manipulate the spin-dependent transport.
Aharonov-Bohm interferometer; Double quantum dot; Andreev reflection; Rashba spin-orbit interaction; Coherent indirect coupling; 73.63.Kv; 73.23.-b; 72.25.-b
Superconducting point contacts have been used for measuring magnetic polarizations, identifying magnetic impurities, electronic structures, and even the vibrational modes of small molecules. Due to intrinsically small energy scale in the subgap structures of the supercurrent determined by the size of the superconducting energy gap, superconductors provide ultrahigh sensitivities for high resolution spectroscopies. The so-called Andreev reflection process between normal metal and superconductor carries complex and rich information which can be utilized as powerful sensor when fully exploited. In this review, we would discuss recent experimental and theoretical developments in the supercurrent transport through superconducting point contacts and their relevance to sensing applications, and we would highlight their current issues and potentials. A true utilization of the method based on Andreev reflection analysis opens up possibilities for a new class of ultrasensitive sensors.
point contact spectroscopy; superconductivity; andreev reflections
Superconductivity is due to an attractive interaction between electrons that, below a critical temperature, drives them to form Cooper pairs and to condense into a ground state separated by an energy gap from the unpaired states. In the simplest cases, the pairing is mediated by lattice vibrations and the wavefunction of the pairs is isotropic. Less conventional pairing mechanisms can favour more exotic symmetries of the Cooper pairs. Here, we report on point-contact spectroscopy measurements in PuCoGa5, a moderate heavy-fermion superconductor with a record high critical temperature Tc=18.5 K. The results prove that the wavefunction of the paired electrons has a d-wave symmetry, with four lobes and nodes, and show that the pairing is likely to be mediated by spin fluctuations. Electronic structure calculations, which take into account the full structure of the f-orbital multiplets of Pu, provide a hint of the possible origin of these fluctuations.
The heavy-fermion material PuCoGa5 is characterized by unconventional superconducting properties. By combining point-contact spectroscopy and first-principles calculations, this study reveals a d-wave symmetry in the system's order parameter.
Artificial molecules containing just one or two electrons provide a powerful platform
for studies of orbital and spin quantum dynamics in nanoscale devices. A well-known
example of these dynamics is tunnelling of electrons between two coupled quantum
dots triggered by microwave irradiation. So far, these tunnelling processes have
been treated as electric-dipole-allowed spin-conserving events. Here we report that
microwaves can also excite tunnelling transitions between states with different
spin. We show that the dominant mechanism responsible for violation of spin
conservation is the spin–orbit interaction. These transitions make it
possible to perform detailed microwave spectroscopy of the molecular spin states of
an artificial hydrogen molecule and open up the possibility of realizing full
quantum control of a two-spin system through microwave excitation.
Tunnelling transitions triggered by microwave irradiation between
coupled quantum dots have generally been assumed to be spin-conserving. This study shows
that this condition is violated in the presence of spin–orbit coupling, thus
opening new possibilities for manipulating a two–spin qubit system by
Coherent control of quantum states is at the heart of implementing solid-state quantum
processors and testing quantum mechanics at the macroscopic level. Despite significant
progress made in recent years in controlling single- and bi-partite quantum systems,
coherent control of quantum wave function in multipartite systems involving artificial
solid-state qubits has been hampered due to the relatively short decoherence time and lack
of precise control methods. Here we report the creation and coherent manipulation of quantum
states in a tripartite quantum system, which is formed by a superconducting qubit coupled to
two microscopic two-level systems (TLSs). The avoided crossings in the system's energy-level
spectrum due to the qubit–TLS interaction act as tunable quantum beam splitters of wave
functions. Our result shows that the Landau–Zener–Stückelberg interference has great
potential in precise control of the quantum states in the tripartite system.
Coherent control of solid-state multi-qubit systems is
highly desirable for quantum information. Here the authors show coupling, and control through
Landau–Zener interference, of a superconducting qubit and two microscopic two-level systems, creating
an interesting platform for quantum computation.
The pairing mechanism for the high- superconductors based on the electron-phonon (EPH) and electron-electron-phonon (EEPH) interactions has been presented. On the fold mean-field level, it has been proven, that the obtained s-wave model supplements the predictions based on the BCS van Hove scenario. In particular: (i) For strong EEPH coupling and the energy gap () is very weak temperature dependent; up to the critical temperature extends into the anomalous normal state to the Nernst temperature. (ii) The model explains well the experimental dependence of the ratio on doping for the reported superconductors in the terms of the few fundamental parameters. In the presented paper, the properties of the d-wave superconducting state in the two-dimensional system have been also studied. The obtained results, like for s-wave, have shown the energy gap amplitude crossover from the BCS to non-BCS behavior, as the value of the EEPH potential increases. However, for the energy gap amplitude extends into the anomalous normal state to the pseudogap temperature. Finally, it has been presented that the anisotropic model explains the dependence of the ratio on doping for the considered superconductors.
Recently, cold atomic Fermi gases with the large magnetic dipolar interaction have been laser cooled down to quantum degeneracy. Different from electric-dipoles which are classic vectors, atomic magnetic dipoles are quantum-mechanical matrix operators proportional to the hyperfine-spin of atoms, thus provide rich opportunities to investigate exotic many-body physics. Furthermore, unlike anisotropic electric dipolar gases, unpolarized magnetic dipolar systems are isotropic under simultaneous spin-orbit rotation. These features give rise to a robust mechanism for a novel pairing symmetry: orbital p-wave (L = 1) spin triplet (S = 1) pairing with total angular momentum of the Cooper pair J = 1. This pairing is markedly different from both the 3He-B phase in which J = 0 and the 3He-A phase in which J is not conserved. It is also different from the p-wave pairing in the single-component electric dipolar systems in which the spin degree of freedom is frozen.
Photonic quantum systems are among the most promising architectures for quantum computers. It is well known that for dual-rail photons effective non-linearities and near-deterministic non-trivial two-qubit gates can be achieved via the measurement process and by introducing ancillary photons. While in principle this opens a legitimate path to scalable linear optical quantum computing, the technical requirements are still very challenging and thus other optical encodings are being actively investigated. One of the alternatives is to use single-rail encoded photons, where entangled states can be deterministically generated. Here we prove that even for such systems universal optical quantum computing using only passive optical elements such as beam splitters and phase shifters is not possible. This no-go theorem proves that photon bunching cannot be passively suppressed even when extra ancilla modes and arbitrary number of photons are used. Our result provides useful guidance for the design of optical quantum computers.
Spin-triplet superconductivity in Sr2RuO4 has attracted enormous interest. Like other unconventional superconductors, superconductivity in Sr2RuO4 is in close proximity to magnetic instability. Undoped Sr2RuO4 exhibits incommensurate antiferromagnetic (AFM) fluctuations, which can evolve into static, short-range AFM order via Ti doping. Moreover, weak ferromagnetic (FM) coupling in Sr2RuO4 has also been suggested by NMR/neutron scattering experiments and studies on Ca2−xSrxRuO4 and Sr2−yLayRuO4, implying orbital dependent magnetism. We report bulk static, short-range FM order in Sr2RuO4 triggered by <2% Co doping, showing superconductivity in Sr2RuO4 is much closer to FM instability than previously reported in Ca2−xSrxRuO4. We also find Mn doping can effectively establish incommensurate AFM order, with TN ~ 50 K for 3% Mn doping. These new results place Sr2RuO4 in a unique situation where superconductivity lies directly on the borderline of two distinct magnetic states, highlighting the important role of competing magnetic fluctuations in determining superconducting properties of Sr2RuO4.
A new possible scenario for the origin of the molecular collective behaviour associated with the emergence of living matter is presented. We propose that the transition from a non-living to a living cell could be mapped to a quantum transition to a coherent entanglement of condensates, like in a multigap BCS superconductor. Here the decoherence-evading qualities at high temperature are based on the Feshbach resonance that has been recently proposed as the driving mechanism for high Tc superconductors. Finally we discuss how the proximity to a particular critical point is relevant to the emergence of coherence in the living cell.
origin of life; quantum coherence; biological networks; network of networks; Bose condensation; quantum statistics of networks; Feshbach resonance; multiband superconductivity; multigap superconductivity
Understanding magnetism and electron correlation in many unconventional superconductors is essential to explore mechanism of superconductivity. In this work, we perform a systematic numerical study of the magnetic and pair binding properties in recently discovered polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAH) superconductors including alkali-metal-doped picene, coronene, phenanthrene, and dibenzopentacene. The π-electrons on the carbon atoms of a single molecule are modelled by the one-orbital Hubbard model, and the energy difference between carbon atoms with and without hydrogen bonds is taking into account. We demonstrate that the spin polarized ground state is realized for charged molecules in the physical parameter regions, which provides a reasonable explanation of local spins observed in PAHs. In alkali-metal-doped dibenzopentacene, our results show that electron correlation may produce an effective attraction between electrons for the charged molecule with one or three added electrons.
The origin of pairing in a superconductor resides in the underlying normal state. In the cuprate high-temperature superconductor YBa2Cu3Oy (YBCO), application of a magnetic field to suppress superconductivity reveals a ground state that appears to break the translational symmetry of the lattice, pointing to some density-wave order. Here we use a comparative study of thermoelectric transport in the cuprates YBCO and La1.8−xEu0.2SrxCuO4 (Eu-LSCO) to show that the two materials exhibit the same process of Fermi-surface reconstruction as a function of temperature and doping. The fact that in Eu-LSCO this reconstruction coexists with spin and charge modulations that break translational symmetry shows that stripe order is the generic non-superconducting ground state of hole-doped cuprates.
An electron pocket exists in the Fermi-surface of the high temperature superconductor YBa2Cu3Oy, but its origin is unknown. Here, YBa2Cu3Oy and La1.8−xEu0.2SrxCuO4 are both shown to exhibit Fermi-surface reconstruction, and in the latter, this is due to stripe order, suggesting that the same mechanism exists in YBa2Cu3Oy.
Electron reflection at an interface is a fundamental quantum transport phenomenon. The most famous electron reflection is the electron→hole Andreev reflection (AR) at a metal/superconductor interface. While AR can be either specular or retro-type, electron→electron reflection is limited to only the specular type. Here we show that electrons can undergo retro-reflection in bilayer graphene (BLG). The underlying mechanism for this previously unknown process is the anisotropic constant energy band contour of BLG. The electron group velocity is fully reversed upon reflection, causing electrons to be retro-reflected. Utilizing a BLG/superconductor junction (BLG/S) as a model structure, we show that the unique low energy quasiparticle nature of BLG results in two striking features: (1) AR is completely absent, making BLG/S 100% electron reflective; (2) electrons are valley-selectively focused upon retro-reflection. Our results suggest that BLG/S is a valley-selective Veselago electron focusing mirror which can be useful in valleytronic applications.
Nanoscale wavelength-converted optical components are promising components for communication and optical information processing in integrated photonic system. In this work, we report a facile strategy for realizing continuously tunable wavelength-converted wave-guiding in dye-doped nanofibers. The nanofibers with diameters of 200–800 nm have an absorption coefficient of about 80 cm−1 and a self-absorption coefficient of about 30 cm−1, and exhibit relatively high PL efficiency and high photobleaching resistance under an optical pump. By launching the pump light into the nanofibers, the excited light in the nanofibers got self-absorption and reemitted at a longer wavelength, resulting in a gradual wavelength conversion during propagation. On the basis of this wavelength-converted wave-guiding, nanoscale wavelength-converted splitters were demonstrated by assembling the nanofibers into crossed structures. We believe that the dye-doped nanofibers would bring new exciting opportunities in developing new wavelength-converted optical components for nanophotonic device integration.
We present a system which uses a single spatial light modulator to control the spin angular momentum of multiple optical traps. These traps may be independently controlled both in terms of spatial location and in terms of their spin angular momentum content. The system relies on a spatial light modulator used in a “split-screen” configuration to generate beams of orthogonal polarisation states which are subsequently combined at a polarising beam splitter. Defining the phase difference between the beams with the spatial light modulator enables control of the polarisation state of the light. We demonstrate the functionality of the system by controlling the rotation and orientation of birefringent vaterite crystals within holographic optical tweezers.
The ability to manipulate quantum states of light by integrated devices may open new perspectives both for fundamental tests of quantum mechanics and for novel technological applications. However, the technology for handling polarization-encoded qubits, the most commonly adopted approach, is still missing in quantum optical circuits. Here we demonstrate the first integrated photonic controlled-NOT (CNOT) gate for polarization-encoded qubits. This result has been enabled by the integration, based on femtosecond laser waveguide writing, of partially polarizing beam splitters on a glass chip. We characterize the logical truth table of the quantum gate demonstrating its high fidelity to the expected one. In addition, we show the ability of this gate to transform separable states into entangled ones and vice versa. Finally, the full accessibility of our device is exploited to carry out a complete characterization of the CNOT gate through a quantum process tomography.
As quantum information processing continues to develop apace, the need for integrated photonic devices becomes ever greater for both fundamental measurements and technological applications. To this end, Crespi et al. demonstrate a high-fidelity photonic controlled-NOT gate on a glass chip.
Domain walls, nanoscale transition regions separating oppositely oriented ferromagnetic domains, have significant promise for use in spintronic devices for data storage and memristive applications. The state of these devices is related to the wall position and thus rapid operation will require a controllable onset of domain wall motion and high speed wall displacement. These processes are traditionally driven by spin transfer torque due to lateral injection of spin polarized current through a ferromagnetic nanostrip. However, this geometry is often hampered by low maximum wall velocities and/or a need for prohibitively high current densities. Here, using time-resolved magnetotransport measurements, we show that vertical injection of spin currents through a magnetic tunnel junction can drive domain walls over hundreds of nanometers at ~500 m/s using current densities on the order of 6 MA/cm2. Moreover, these measurements provide information about the stochastic and deterministic aspects of current driven domain wall mediated switching.
Chemically informative J couplings between pairs
of quadrupolar nuclei in dimetallic and dimetalloid coordination motifs
are measured using J-resolved solid-state NMR experiments.
It is shown that the application of a double-quantum filter is necessary
to observe the J splittings and that, under these
conditions, only a simple doublet is expected. Interestingly, the
splitting is amplified if the spins are magnetically equivalent, making
it possible to measure highly precise J couplings
and unambiguously probe the symmetry of the molecule. This is demonstrated
experimentally by chemically breaking the symmetry about a pair of
boron spins by reaction with an N-heterocyclic carbene to form a β-borylation
reagent. The results show that the J coupling is
a sensitive probe of bonding in diboron compounds and that the J values quantify the weakening of the B–B bond which
occurs when forming an sp2–sp3 diboron
compound, which is relevant to their reactivity. Due to the prevalence
of quadrupolar nuclei among transition metals, this work also provides
a new approach to probe metal–metal bonding; results for Mn2(CO)10 are provided as an example.
Clarifying the coupling between electrons and bosonic excitations (phonons or magnetic fluctuations) that mediate the formation of Cooper pairs is pivotal to understand superconductivity. Such coupling effects are contained in the electron self-energy, which is experimentally accessible via angle-resolved photoemission spectroscopy (ARPES). However, in unconventional superconductors, identifying the nature of the electron-boson coupling remains elusive partly because of the significant band renormalization due to electron correlation. Until now, to quantify the electron-boson coupling, the self-energy is most often determined by assuming a phenomenological ‘bare’ band. Here, we demonstrate that the conventional procedure underestimates the electron-boson coupling depending on the electron-electron coupling, even if the self-energy appears to be self-consistent via the Kramers-Kronig relation. Our refined method explains well the electron-boson and electron-electron coupling strength in ruthenate superconductor Sr2RuO4, calling for a critical revision of the bosonic coupling strength from ARPES self-energy in strongly correlated electron systems.
Quantum interferometry uses quantum resources to improve phase estimation with respect to classical methods. Here we propose and theoretically investigate a new quantum interferometric scheme based on three-dimensional waveguide devices. These can be implemented by femtosecond laser waveguide writing, recently adopted for quantum applications. In particular, multiarm interferometers include “tritter” and “quarter” as basic elements, corresponding to the generalization of a beam splitter to a 3- and 4-port splitter, respectively. By injecting Fock states in the input ports of such interferometers, fringe patterns characterized by nonclassical visibilities are expected. This enables outperforming the quantum Fisher information obtained with classical fields in phase estimation. We also discuss the possibility of achieving the simultaneous estimation of more than one optical phase. This approach is expected to open new perspectives to quantum enhanced sensing and metrology performed in integrated photonics.
Double quantum dots are convenient solid-state platforms to encode quantum information. Two-electron spin states can be detected and manipulated using quantum selection rules based on the Pauli exclusion principle, leading to Pauli spin blockade of electron transport for triplet states. Coherent spin states would be optimally preserved in an environment free of nuclear spins, which is achievable in silicon by isotopic purification. Here we report on a deliberately engineered, gate-defined silicon metal-oxide-semiconductor double quantum dot system. The electron occupancy of each dot and the inter-dot tunnel coupling are independently tunable by electrostatic gates. At weak inter-dot coupling we clearly observe Pauli spin blockade and measure a large intra-dot singlet-triplet splitting > 1 meV. The leakage current in spin blockade has a peculiar magnetic field dependence, unrelated to electron-nuclear effects and consistent with the effect of spin-flip cotunneling processes. The results obtained here provide excellent prospects for realising singlet-triplet qubits.
Spin-dependent transport through a quantum-dot (QD) ring coupled to ferromagnetic leads with noncollinear magnetizations is studied theoretically. Tunneling current, current spin polarization and tunnel magnetoresistance (TMR) as functions of the bias voltage and the direct coupling strength between the two leads are analyzed by the nonequilibrium Green's function technique. It is shown that the magnitudes of these quantities are sensitive to the relative angle between the leads' magnetic moments and the quantum interference effect originated from the inter-lead coupling. We pay particular attention on the Coulomb blockade regime and find the relative current magnitudes of different magnetization angles can be reversed by tuning the inter-lead coupling strength, resulting in sign change of the TMR. For large enough inter-lead coupling strength, the current spin polarizations for parallel and antiparallel magnetic configurations will approach to unit and zero, respectively.
To study the interface between a conventional superconductor and a topological insulator, we fabricated Pb-Bi2Te3-Pb lateral and sandwiched junctions, and performed electron transport measurements down to low temperatures. The results show that there is a strong superconducting proximity effect between Bi2Te3 and Pb, as that a supercurrent can be established along the thickness direction of the Bi2Te3 flakes (100~300 nm thick) at a temperature very close to the superconducting Tc of Pb. Moreover, a Josephson current can be established over several microns in the lateral direction between two Pb electrodes on the Bi2Te3 surface. We have further demonstrated that superconducting quantum interference devices can be constructed based on the proximity-effect-induced superconductivity. The critical current of the devices exhibits s-wave-like interference and Fraunhofer diffraction patterns. With improved designs, Josephson devices of this type would provide a test-bed for exploring novel phenomena such as Majorana fermions in the future.
We report on new developments in the quantum picture of correlated electron transport in charge and spin density waves. The model treats the condensate as a quantum fluid in which charge soliton domain wall pairs nucleate above a Coulomb blockade threshold field. We employ a time-correlated soliton tunneling model, analogous to the theory of time-correlated single electron tunneling, to interpret the voltage oscillations and nonlinear current-voltage characteristics above threshold. An inverse scaling relationship between threshold field and dielectric response, originally proposed by Grüner, emerges naturally from the model. Flat dielectric and other ac responses below threshold in NbSe3 and TaS3, as well as small density wave phase displacements, indicate that the measured threshold is often much smaller than the classical depinning field. In some materials, the existence of two distinct threshold fields suggests that both soliton nucleation and classical depinning may occur. In our model, the ratio of electrostatic charging to pinning energy helps determine whether soliton nucleation or classical depinning dominates.
Charge density wave; spin density wave; soliton; quantum tunneling