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Observation of Majorana fermions in ferromagnetic atomic chains on a superconductor

Nadj-Perge, Stevan and Drozdov, Ilya K. and Li, Jian and Chen, Hua and Jeon, Sangjun and Seo, Jungpil and MacDonald, Allan H. and Bernevig, B. Andrei and Yazdani, Ali (2014) Observation of Majorana fermions in ferromagnetic atomic chains on a superconductor. Science, 346 (6209). pp. 602-607. ISSN 0036-8075. doi:10.1126/science.1259327.

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Majorana fermions are predicted to localize at the edge of a topological superconductor, a state of matter that can form when a ferromagnetic system is placed in proximity to a conventional superconductor with strong spin-orbit interaction. With the goal of realizing a one-dimensional topological superconductor, we have fabricated ferromagnetic iron (Fe) atomic chains on the surface of superconducting lead (Pb). Using high-resolution spectroscopic imaging techniques, we show that the onset of superconductivity, which gaps the electronic density of states in the bulk of the Fe chains, is accompanied by the appearance of zero-energy end-states. This spatially resolved signature provides strong evidence, corroborated by other observations, for the formation of a topological phase and edge-bound Majorana fermions in our atomic chains.

Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription Paper
Nadj-Perge, Stevan0000-0002-2916-360X
Drozdov, Ilya K.0000-0002-8185-1194
Li, Jian0000-0003-0297-6528
Chen, Hua0000-0003-0676-3079
Seo, Jungpil0000-0002-0442-288X
MacDonald, Allan H.0000-0003-3561-3379
Additional Information:© 2014 American Association for the Advancement of Science. 28 July 2014; accepted 19 September 2014. Published online 2 October 2014. We thank F. von Oppen, L. Glazman, D. Loss, A. Stern, J. Alicea, M. Franz, R. Lutchyn, C.-K. Shih, B. Feldman, M. Randeria, P. Lee, and N. P. Ong for helpful discussions. The work at Princeton University has been primarily supported by Majorana Basic Research Challenge grant through ONR-N00014-14-1-0330, ONR-N00014-11-1-0635, ONR- N00014-13-10661, NSF–Materials Research Science and Engineering Center programs through the Princeton Center for Complex Materials DMR-0819860, and NSF CAREER DMR-095242. Work at the University of Texas at Austin was supported by ONR-N00014-14-1-0330 and the Welch Foundation grant TBF1473. This project was also made possible using the facilities at Princeton Nanoscale Microscopy Laboratory supported by grants through NSF-DMR-1104612, ARO-W911NF-1-0262, ARO-MURI program W911NF-12-1-0461, U.S. Department of Energy Office of Basic Energy Sciences, DARPA-SPWAR Meso program N6601-11-1-4110, Laboratory for Physical Sciences and ARO-W911NF-1-0606, and the W. Keck Foundation. A.Y., B.A.B., and Princeton University have filed a provisional patent related to this work. S.N.-P. acknowledges support of the European Union Marie Curie program (IOF 302937); J.L. acknowledges support of the Swiss National Science Foundation; and A.Y. acknowledges the hospitality of the Aspen Center for Physics, supported under NSF grant PHYS-1066293.
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Office of Naval Research (ONR)N00014-14-1-0330
Office of Naval Research (ONR)N00014-11-1-0635
Office of Naval Research (ONR)N00014-13-10661
Office of Naval Research (ONR)N00014-14-1-0330
Welch FoundationTBF1473
Army Research Office (ARO)W911NF-1-0262
Army Research Office (ARO)W911NF-12-1-0461
Department of Energy (DOE)UNSPECIFIED
Office of Naval Research (ONR)N6601-11-1-4110
Army Research Office (ARO)W911NF-1-0606
W. M. Keck FoundationUNSPECIFIED
Marie Curie FellowshipIOF 302937
Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA)UNSPECIFIED
Swiss National Science Foundation (SNSF)UNSPECIFIED
Issue or Number:6209
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20160113-070932588
Persistent URL:
Official Citation:Observation of Majorana fermions in ferromagnetic atomic chains on a superconductor Stevan Nadj-Perge, Ilya K. Drozdov, Jian Li, Hua Chen, Sangjun Jeon, Jungpil Seo, Allan H. MacDonald, B. Andrei Bernevig, Ali Yazdani Science31 Oct 2014 : 602-607
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:63615
Deposited By: Ruth Sustaita
Deposited On:13 Jan 2016 17:45
Last Modified:10 Nov 2021 23:19

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