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Graphene inherits superconductor qualities when close to superconductors

• http://www.nextbigfuture.com

MIT physicists have found that a flake of graphene, when brought in close proximity with two superconducting materials, can inherit some of those materials' superconducting qualities. As graphene is sandwiched between superconductors, its electronic state changes dramatically, even at its center.

The researchers found that graphene's electrons, formerly behaving as individual, scattering particles, instead pair up in "Andreev states" — a fundamental electronic configuration that allows a conventional, nonsuperconducting material to carry a "supercurrent," an electric current that flows without dissipating energy.

The researchers' graphene platform may be used to explore exotic particles, such as Majorana fermions, which are thought to arise from Andreev states and may be key particles for building powerful, error-proof quantum computers.

MIT physicists have found that a flake of graphene, when brought in close proximity with two superconducting materials, can inherit some of those materials' superconducting qualities. As graphene is sandwiched between superconductors, its electronic state changes dramatically, even at its center. Pictured is the experimental concept and device schematic.

Nature Physics – Tunnelling spectroscopy of Andreev states in graphene


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