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Helical Liquids and Majorana Bound States in Quantum Wires

Oreg, Yuval and Refael, Gil and von Oppen, Felix (2010) Helical Liquids and Majorana Bound States in Quantum Wires. Physical Review Letters, 105 (17). p. 177002. ISSN 0031-9007. doi:10.1103/PhysRevLett.105.177002.

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We show that the combination of spin-orbit coupling with a Zeeman field or strong interactions may lead to the formation of a helical electron liquid in single-channel quantum wires, with spin and velocity perfectly correlated. We argue that zero-energy Majorana bound states are formed in various situations when such wires are situated in proximity to a conventional s-wave superconductor. This occurs when the external magnetic field, the superconducting gap, or, most simply, the chemical potential vary along the wire. These Majorana states do not require the presence of a vortex in the system. Experimental consequences of the helical liquid and the Majorana states are also discussed.

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Additional Information:© 2010 American Physical Society. Received 16 March 2010; published 20 October 2010. We would like to thank J. Moore, J. Alicea, E. Berg, and O. Starykh for enlightening discussions. The research was supported by ISF, DIP, BSF, and SPP 1285 grants, as well as the Packard and Sloan foundations, and by the Institute for Quantum Information under NSF Grants No. PHY-0456720 and No. PHY-0803371.
Group:Institute for Quantum Information and Matter
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Israel Science Foundation (ISF)UNSPECIFIED
Deutsch-Israelische Projektkooperation (DIP)UNSPECIFIED
Binational Science Foundation (BSF)UNSPECIFIED
Priority Programme (SPP), Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG)SPP 1285
Packard FoundationUNSPECIFIED
Sloan FoundationUNSPECIFIED
Issue or Number:17
Classification Code:PACS: 74.78.Na, 03.67.Lx, 73.63.Nm, 74.78.Fk
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20101109-122846688
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Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:20736
Deposited On:10 Nov 2010 18:39
Last Modified:09 Nov 2021 00:02

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