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Majorana Fermions in Equilibrium and Driven Cold Atom Quantum Wires

By Liang Jiang, Takuya Kitagawa, Jason Alicea, A. R. Akhmerov, David Pekker, Gil Refael, J. Ignacio Cirac, Eugene Demler, Mikhail D. Lukin and Peter Zoller


We introduce a new approach to create and detect Majorana fermions using optically trapped 1D fermionic atoms. In our proposed setup, two internal states of the atoms couple via an optical Raman transition---simultaneously inducing an effective spin-orbit interaction and magnetic field---while a background molecular BEC cloud generates s-wave pairing for the atoms. The resulting cold atom quantum wire supports Majorana fermions at phase boundaries between topologically trivial and nontrivial regions, as well as `Floquet Majorana fermions' when the system is periodically driven. We analyze experimental parameters, detection schemes, and various imperfections.Comment: 4 pages, 3 figures; references adde

Topics: Condensed Matter - Quantum Gases, Quantum Physics
Year: 2011
DOI identifier: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.106.220402
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