Thursday, May 24, 2012

Paper On Possible Sign Of Majorana Fermions In Solid-State System Published

I mentioned this a while back on the possible discovery of Majorna fermions in a solid state system. While the paper has appeared earlier, it has now officially been published by Science.

V. Mourik et al., Science v.336, p.1003 (2012).

Abstract: Majorana fermions are particles identical to their own antiparticles. They have been theoretically predicted to exist in topological superconductors. Here, we report electrical measurements on indium antimonide nanowires contacted with one normal (gold) and one superconducting (niobium titanium nitride) electrode. Gate voltages vary electron density and define a tunnel barrier between normal and superconducting contacts. In the presence of magnetic fields on the order of 100 millitesla, we observe bound, midgap states at zero bias voltage. These bound states remain fixed to zero bias, even when magnetic fields and gate voltages are changed over considerable ranges. Our observations support the hypothesis of Majorana fermions in nanowires coupled to superconductors. 

I'm sure they'll continue to have a better experiment to nail this down even more.


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