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Denis Konstantinov - Japon

New quantum phenomena in electrons on liquid helium induced by microwave excitation

Surface-state electrons on liquid helium present an interesting complement to the well-known system of 2D electron gas in semiconductors. This is a low-density system with large ratio of the potential energy of electron-electron interaction to the electron kinetic energy. Therefore, even at T=0 electrons comprise a strongly-correlated classical system rather than quantum degenerate Fermi gas typical for electrons in semiconductors. On the other hand, the system is completely free from impurities, with electron mobility limited only by their interaction with surface vibrations. Thus, electrons on helium present an ultra-clean model system ideal to study quantum transport and related phenomena.
Recent interest in this system is driven, in particular, by several proposals to employ electrons on helium for qubits, with the promise of long coherence time [1]. This motivated us to study this system under microwave radiation that resonantly excites electrons from the ground subband to the first excited subband. Under this condition, electrons reveal a number of interesting phenomena including optical bistability [2], zero-resistance states [3], vanishing compressibility [4] etc. Extremely rich physics of these phenomena promises to motivate further intense experimental and theoretical studies in this system with emphasis, in particular, in spin physics and quantum engineering.

[1] Dykman, Platzma, Science 284, 1967 (1999).
[2] Konstantinov et al. PRL 103, 096801 (2009).
[3] Konstantinov, Kono PRL 105, 226801 (2010).
[4] Chepelianskii et al. Nature Communication, in press.


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