Research Talk: Dissipationless Quantum Electronics
19 October, 2016
Guess what everyone, the Physoc team has another fun and interesting research talk available to you! Wednesday week 12 we will have post graduate Tommy Li enlightening our minds about the wonders of Dissipationless Quantum Electronics.
Here's some more info to really get you interested!
"Spintronics" refers to a highly active area of research that aims to develop electronic devices whose operation is augmented by manipulation of the quantum spin of the electron. A new direction has recently emerged within this context, which involves a class of systems known as topological materials and was ignited by the discovery of the topological insulators. These are entirely new states of matter now widely regarded as a promising route to electronic circuitry which can operate with exponentially low dissipation even at room temperature. My research focuses on an important step towards achieving this ambitious and challenging goal, taking engineered semiconductor systems as its platform: the creation of accurate quantum mechanical models which can be realised with current experimental technology and have the potential to host the physics of topological materials. These models are particularly interesting from a fundamental perspective due to their close connection to concepts originally developed as purely abstract constructions in high energy physics, which may soon be accessed in the laboratory. Aside from accelerating the development of electronic devices which radically depart from traditional paradigms, these provide a bridge connecting the sublime physics of fundamental particles and the components of integrated circuitry which we take for granted in all forms of modern electronic technology.
Please note that this talk will contain a very simple theoretical introduction to the highly novel field of topological insulators as required for the understanding of the original research. This discussion will contain some formulas at the level of high school and some first year university understanding of electromagnetism and quantum physics. Students who are interested in following the discussion closely should be familiar with: Ohm's law, electrostatic potential energy, the Pauli exclusion principle, and the de Broglie principle (the relationship between the quantum wavelength and the momentum). These ideas will be explained briefly during the talk.