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Title ImagePublic Abstract


DE-SC0021281: Exploring Nontrivial Topological Superconductivity in 2M WS2 for Topological Quantum Computation

Award Status: Expired
  • Institution: University of Wyoming, Laramie, WY
  • UEI: FDR5YF2K32X5
  • DUNS: 069690956
  • Most Recent Award Date: 08/19/2022
  • Number of Support Periods: 3
  • PM: Fitzsimmons, Timothy
  • Current Budget Period: 09/01/2022 - 08/31/2023
  • Current Project Period: 09/01/2020 - 08/31/2023
  • PI: Tian, Jifa
  • Supplement Budget Period: N/A

Public Abstract

In recent years, topological quantum computation has attracted broad interest. To achieve future topological quantum computation, two fundamental questions will need to be addressed: (1) what kind of condensed matter systems can host topological superconductivity that features reliable non-Abelian anyons, such as Majorana zero modes (MZMs)? And (2) how can we braid MZMs to form qubits? So far, most of the research efforts focus on searching for reliable topological superconductors (TSCs) in condensed matter systems. Despite the fact that Majorana particles have been reported in a few intrinsic materials and artificial structures, their synthesis or fabrication conditions are critical, and even the realization of topological superconductivity requires extreme experimental conditions. The newly discovered 2M WS2 (2M stands for a monoclinic structure with two layers per unit cell) with a relatively high transition temperature (TC ~ 8.8 K), simple composition and a layered structure offers an ideal platform for investigating MZMs for topological quantum computation. This collaborative project aims for two main goals: (1) establishing the layer-dependence of superconductivity in the intrinsic TSC 2M WS2; and (2) identifying clear signatures of MZMs in 2M WS2 thin layers. The two goals will be achieved by growing high-quality 2M WS2 single crystals and preparing thin layers down to the 2D limit for various measurements, including transport measurements (charge, thermal and spin), scanning tunneling microscopy and spectroscopy (STM/S), and angle-resolved photoemission spectroscopy (ARPES). The layer-dependence of the superconductivity and clear signatures of MZMs in 2M WS2 will be experimentally revealed and theoretically understood. Our proposed work herein will not only address the fundamental questions in realizing topological quantum computation, but also advance quantum information science for US national security and economic needs. Furthermore, with this project, researchers at the University of Wyoming will build a strong partnership with three DOE National Laboratories (DOE NLs) and develop competitive capabilities in the field of topological superconductivity in condensed matters.

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