Research

Our lab goal is to develop (experimentally) a novel nano tool box that controls environmental coupling between quantum states, opening the way for room temperature quantum operating devices. In all our systems the coupling is controlled by organic molecules, and the room temperature quantum states are induced by nano particles.

 

Chiral molecules based nano spitronics devices

With the increasing demand for miniaturization, nano-structures are likely to become the primary components of future integrated circuits. Different approaches are being pursued towards achieving efficient electronics, among which are spin electronics devices (spintronics). In principle, the application of spintronics should result in reducing the power consumption of electronic devices. A new, promising, effective approach for spintronics has emerged using spin selectivity in electron transport through chiral molecules, termed Chiral-Induced Spin Selectivity (CISS). Studying the CISS effect it was found that chiral molecules, and especially helical ones, can serve as very efficient spin filter. Recently, by utilizing this effect we demonstrated a magnet less spin based magnetic memory. The presented technology has the potential to overcome the limitations of other magnetic-based memory technologies to allow fabricating inexpensive, high-density universal and embedded memory-on-chip devices. Another option is to achieve local spin-based magnetization generated optically at ambient temperatures, as well as local charge separation using light induced configuration.

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Quantum Biology

Quantum theory provides a coherent picture of the physical processes at the microscopic scale, which also serves as a basis for the understanding of several scientific fields. Two major ideas of quantum mechanics govern their operation. The first is the quantized behavior of physical properties like energy and momentum. The second is the duality of wave and particle. While the first basic idea is being widely used in our everyday technology, coherent wave properties are not frequently used in real world devices. The traditional paradigm for quantum information processing relies on arrays of pure, isolated quantum bits and their coherent interactions to manipulate quantum superposition and entangled states. This approach has so far been proven to be slower than initially expected. For a long time it was believed that going to a condensed phase while retaining useful quantum behavior would be difficult if not impossible. This has now been disproved in both synthetic and biological systems. Nitrogen vacancy centers in Diamond and quantum dots are a prominent example of such an ‘atom like’ system in a solid. Photosynthetic pigments have shown how coherence can be maintained over hundreds of atoms in a system with low symmetry.
Eventually, the role of noise as potential enhancer, rather than destroyer, of quantum information processing, is being now reconsidered in various scenarios, ranging from to quantum simulations and complexity theory to the emerging field of quantum biology. The ultimate goal of my research is to achieve better theory and experiment on quantum many-body systems to clarify under what conditions quantum coherence coexists with noise. This understanding will allow us to identify (experimental) building blocks exhibiting quantum dynamics on a complexity level comparable to macromolecules and will lead to the realization of what we call the Quantum Machine. We apply self-assembled techniques to order hybrid organic / nano crystal devices. By controlling the coupling and quantum level we aim to establish a way to incorporate a quantum mechanics into a room temperature "classical" computation scheme. This will provide quantum control at nanometer scale distances, while maintaining the physical characteristics of available devices.

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Hybrid Superconducting-Molecular devices

While the superconductor surface proximity effect is well understood in layered superconductor/normal-metal junctions, its understanding is quite limited in systems involving nanoparticles (NPs) and molecules. Fundamental important and intriguing questions such as the nature of Andreev reflections in nanoscale metallic particles and molecules, and the interplay between the different energy scales such intricate systems poses, are still open. Even less understood are proximity effects in hybrid superconductor/linker-molecule/nanoparticle systems we study. The complexity and breadth of phenomena we plan to study is not yet fully understood, and even less clear is the PE in systems involving linker-molecules. In a recent study of such a system, we found experimentally two unique proximity effect - related phenomena, in which TC and the critical current of a Nb film increased upon chemically linking gold NPs. Even more surprising similar effects were measured using magnetic Co NPs. Concomitantly, the tunneling density of states (DOS) in the gold NPs was significantly modified, and showing either zero-bias peaks or proximity induced gaps. These unexpected phenomena are not fully understood, and several mechanisms can explain the results. A deeper understanding could further insight into the in nanostructured systems and charge transfer through organic molecules, an issue relevant to the emerging field of molecular quantum electronics.

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Quantum devices at ambient temperatures

Quantum theory provides a coherent picture of the physical processes at the microscopic scale, which also serves as a basis for the understanding of several scientific fields. Two major ideas of quantum mechanics govern their operation. The first is the quantized behavior of physical properties like energy and momentum. The second is the duality of wave and particle. While the first basic idea is being widely used in our everyday technology, coherent wave properties are not frequently used in real world devices. The traditional paradigm for quantum information processing relies on arrays of pure, isolated quantum bits and their coherent interactions to manipulate quantum superposition and entangled states. This approach has so far been proven to be slower than initially expected. For a long time it was believed that going to a condensed phase while retaining useful quantum behavior would be difficult if not impossible. This has now been disproved in both synthetic and biological systems. Nitrogen vacancy centers in Diamond and quantum dots are a prominent example of such an ‘atom like’ system in a solid. Photosynthetic pigments have shown how coherence can be maintained over hundreds of atoms in a system with low symmetry.
Eventually, the role of noise as potential enhancer, rather than destroyer, of quantum information processing, is being now reconsidered in various scenarios, ranging from to quantum simulations and complexity theory to the emerging field of quantum biology. The ultimate goal of my research is to achieve better theory and experiment on quantum many-body systems to clarify under what conditions quantum coherence coexists with noise. This understanding will allow us to identify (experimental) building blocks exhibiting quantum dynamics on a complexity level comparable to macromolecules and will lead to the realization of what we call the Quantum Machine. We apply self-assembled techniques to order hybrid organic / nano crystal devices. By controlling the coupling and quantum level we aim to establish a way to incorporate a quantum mechanics into a room temperature "classical" computation scheme. This will provide quantum control at nanometer scale distances, while maintaining the physical characteristics of available devices.

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Applied Physics Department
Faculty of Science
The Hebrew University,
Jerusalem 9190401, Israel

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