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Uncovering hidden quantum transitions in nanowire Josephson junctions

Published on:

10 December 2019

Primary Category:

Mesoscale and Nanoscale Physics

Paper Authors:

Chaitanya Murthy,

Vladislav D. Kurilovich,

Pavel D. Kurilovich,

Bernard van Heck,

Leonid I. Glazman,

Chetan Nayak

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Key Details

A magnetic field drives a topological transition in proximitized nanowires, marked by Majorana modes

The 4π-periodic Josephson effect emerges gradually near the transition point

An unusual gapless phase arises from strong Majorana coupling across the junction

This gapless phase leads to observable signatures in the Josephson current

The results provide guidance for experiments probing Majorana physics and topological transitions

AI generated summary

Uncovering hidden quantum transitions in nanowire Josephson junctions

This paper investigates the properties of Josephson junctions formed in semiconducting nanowires with strong spin-orbit coupling, proximitized by an s-wave superconductor. A parallel magnetic field drives a topological quantum phase transition in the nanowire, marked by the emergence of Majorana zero modes that couple across the junction. The paper shows that the 4π-periodic Josephson effect associated with Majorana modes develops gradually near the transition point, making it challenging to detect. However, the excitation spectrum reveals an unusual gapless phase arising from the strong Majorana coupling, which leads to observable signatures in the Josephson current. The results provide guidance for future experiments probing Majorana physics and topological transitions in nanowires.

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