Optical Lattices for carriers and excitons in semiconductors

Monday, April 4, 2011 -
4:00pm to 5:00pm
Carlo Piermarocchi
Speaker's Institution: 
Michigan State University

Laser-induced optical potentials for atoms have led to remarkable advances in precision measurement, quantum information, and towards addressing fundamental questions in condensed matter physics. In this seminar, I will describe analogous optical potentials for electrons and
bound electron-hole pairs (excitons) in semiconductors. I will present theoretical results showing that this potential can be large relative to the equilibrium temperature of the material, resulting in a mechanism that can trap, guide, and manipulate individual electrons and/or holes within a semiconductor quantum well or wire. These potentials can bethought of as artificial nano-structures on the scale of 100 nm that can be strongly spin-dependent and reconfigurable in real-time. Our theoretical results suggest the possibility of integrating ultrafast optics and gate voltages in new single-carrier semiconductor opto-electronic devices, with potential applications in fields such as nano-electronics, spintronics, and quantum information processing.