A device that can separate and recombine pairs of electrons may offer a way to study an unusual form of superconductivity, according to RIKEN physicists. This superconducting state would involve exotic particles called Majorana fermions that could prove useful in developing quantum computers.
RIKEN scientists have created a device called a Josephson junction, which can efficiently split these Cooper pairs as they travel from a superconductor into two one-dimensional normal conductors. Previously, most investigations of Cooper-pair splitting have been done using zero-dimensional quantum dots connected by superconductors.
The study indicates that the device could be used to generate what is known as a topological superconducting state, in which the superposition of an electron and a hole generates Majorana fermions, which could be used as qubits. (ScienceAdvances)