MRSEC Program Overview

Welcome to the internet hub of the Materials Research Science and Engineering Centers (MRSEC). This website provides organized information and resources at the various MRSECs for the international scientific, industrial, and educational materials research and development communities.

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Program Highlights

November 20, 2014

Observation of Majorana fermions in a ferromagnetic chains on a superconductor Princeton Center for Complex Materials

Topological superconductors are a distinct form of matter that is predicted to host boundary Majorana fermions. These quasi-particles are the emergent condensed matter analogs of the putative elementary spin-1/2 particles originally proposed by Ettore Majorana in the 1930’s with the intriguing property of being their own anti-particles. The search for Majorana quasi-particle bound states in condensed matter systems is motivated in part by their potential use as topological qubits to perform fault-tolerant computation aided by their non-Abelian characteristics. We introduce a new platform for realizing one-dimensional topological superconductors and detected their Majorana quasi-particle edge modes with the scanning tunneling microscope. The use of STM achieves both spatial and spectral resolution overcoming the short coming of the previous methods of detection.
November 20, 2014

Ultrahigh Electron Mobility in a Dirac semimetal

What limits the conductivity in a metal? 60 years after the Bloch-Wilson theory of solids, research is still uncovering surprises. The key quantity is the electron mobility, which measures the current carried per electron. In the conventional picture, the mobility at 4 Kelvin is limited only by impurity scattering (Panel A). Progress in purification over the decades has resulted in mobilities as high as 30 million cm2/Vs in the 2D electron gas (2DEG) in GaAs-AlGaAs quantum wells, 90 million cm2/Vs in ultrapure bismuth, and 1 million cm2/Vs in suspended graphene (Panel C).