Applied Physics/Physics Colloquium: Spotting the Elusive Majorana Under the Microscope

Spotting the Elusive Majorana Under the Microscope
Tuesday, November 15, 2016 - 4:30pm to 5:30pm
Hewlett 200
Ali Yazdani (Princeton University)
Abstract / Description: 

There has been considerable interest in creating condensed matter systems that host boundary Majorana fermions. This goal is motivated in part by Majorana fermions' potential use in topological qubits to perform fault-tolerant computation aided by their non-Abelian characteristics. Recently, we have proposed a new platform for the realization of Majorana fermions in condensed matter systems, based on chains of magnetic atoms on the surface of a superconductor. This platform lends itself to measurements with the scanning tunneling microscope (STM) that can be used to directly visualize the Majorana edge mode with both high energy and spatial resolution. Using unique STM instrumentation, we have succeeded in creating this platform and have observed the predicted signatures of localized Majorana zero mode. I will describe our Majorana platform, the experiments to date, and the outlook for further experiments on Majoranas fermions in condensed matter systems.

Held Tuesdays at 4:30 pm in the William R. Hewlett Teaching Center, room 200. Refreshments in the lobby of Varian Physics at 4:15 pm.

Autumn 2016/2017, Committee: R. Blandford (Chair), A, Kapitulnik, R. Laughlin, L. Senatore