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Interaction effects in superconductor/quantum spin Hall devices: Universal transport signatures and fractional Coulomb blockade

Aasen, David and Lee, Shu-Ping and Karzig, Torsten and Alicea, Jason (2016) Interaction effects in superconductor/quantum spin Hall devices: Universal transport signatures and fractional Coulomb blockade. Physical Review B, 94 (16). Art. No. 165113. ISSN 2469-9950.

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Interfacing s-wave superconductors and quantum spin Hall edges produces time-reversal-invariant topological superconductivity of a type that cannot arise in strictly one-dimensional systems. With the aim of establishing sharp fingerprints of this phase, we use renormalization-group methods to extract universal transport characteristics of superconductor/quantum spin Hall heterostructures where the native edge states serve as leads. We determine scaling forms for the conductance through a grounded superconductor and show that the results depend sensitively on the interaction strength in the leads, the size of the superconducting region, and the presence or absence of time-reversal-breaking perturbations. We also study transport across a floating superconducting island isolated by magnetic barriers. Here, we predict e-periodic Coulomb-blockade peaks, as recently observed in nanowire devices [S. M. Albrecht et al., Nature (London) 531, 206 (2016)], with the added feature that the island can support fractional charge tunable via the relative orientation of the barrier magnetizations. As an interesting corollary, when the magnetic barriers arise from strong interactions at the edge that spontaneously break time-reversal symmetry, the Coulomb-blockade periodicity changes from e to e/2. These findings suggest several future experiments that probe unique characteristics of topological superconductivity at the quantum spin Hall edge.

Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription Paper
Aasen, David0000-0002-6552-488X
Karzig, Torsten0000-0003-0834-0547
Alicea, Jason0000-0001-9979-3423
Additional Information:© 2016 American Physical Society. Received 7 July 2016; published 7 October 2016. We thank D. Nandi, R. Lutchyn, and A. Yacoby for illuminating discussions. We also gratefully acknowledge support from the National Science Foundation through Grant No. DMR-1341822 (D. A., S.-P. L., and J. A.); the NSERC PGSD program (D.A.); the Caltech Institute for Quantum Information and Matter, an NSF Physics Frontiers Center with support of the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation through Grant No. GBMF1250; and the Walter Burke Institute for Theoretical Physics at Caltech.
Group:UNSPECIFIED, Walter Burke Institute for Theoretical Physics, Institute for Quantum Information and Matter
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC)UNSPECIFIED
Caltech Institute for Quantum Information and Matter (IQIM)UNSPECIFIED
Gordon and Betty Moore FoundationGBMF1250
Walter Burke Institute for Theoretical Physics, CaltechUNSPECIFIED
Issue or Number:16
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20161012-165715323
Persistent URL:
Official Citation:D. Aasen, S.-P. Lee, T. Karzig and J. Alicea, Physical Review B 94 (16), 165113 (2016).
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:71039
Deposited By: Melissa Ray
Deposited On:17 Oct 2016 16:30
Last Modified:04 Jun 2020 10:14

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