There has been much interest in the study of topological insulators (TI) recently. Due to their unique electronic structure, these new materials have been an active area of research to discover new quantum phenomena and their application in new technologies. Unlike the electronic structure observed in traditional semiconductors, the strong spin-orbit coupling induces a band inversion in the electronic structure of TIs. One of the side effects of this band inversion is creating metallic-like surface states at the material's surface that are protected by time invariance and whose spin angular momentum is locked to the direction of the momentum of the electron. These surface states are essentially resistant to scattering events that otherwise affect other materials. Leveraging the characteristic scattering resistance, the spin-momentum locking of the surface states, and the Dirac cone structure, a spin-resonant tunneling diode using topological insulators has been investigated to implement a negative differential resistance device. Utilizing the spin texture of the surface states, an additional spin-filter can help to suppress the valley current in a negative differential resistance device. In the spin-resonant tunneling diode, the tunneling process would also benefit from having protection from conventional scattering processes due to defects and thickness or line edgemore »
Superconducting diode effect via conformal-mapped nanoholes
Abstract A superconducting diode is an electronic device that conducts supercurrent and exhibits zero resistance primarily for one direction of applied current. Such a dissipationless diode is a desirable unit for constructing electronic circuits with ultralow power consumption. However, realizing a superconducting diode is fundamentally and technologically challenging, as it usually requires a material structure without a centre of inversion, which is scarce among superconducting materials. Here, we demonstrate a superconducting diode achieved in a conventional superconducting film patterned with a conformal array of nanoscale holes, which breaks the spatial inversion symmetry. We showcase the superconducting diode effect through switchable and reversible rectification signals, which can be three orders of magnitude larger than that from a flux-quantum diode. The introduction of conformal potential landscapes for creating a superconducting diode is thereby proven as a convenient, tunable, yet vastly advantageous tool for superconducting electronics. This could be readily applicable to any superconducting materials, including cuprates and iron-based superconductors that have higher transition temperatures and are desirable in device applications.
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- Nature Communications
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- National Science Foundation
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