Metal-Insulator Transition in Disordered Two-Dimensional Electron Systems

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Science  14 Oct 2005:
Vol. 310, Issue 5746, pp. 289-291
DOI: 10.1126/science.1115660

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We present a theory of the metal-insulator transition in a disordered two-dimensional electron gas. A quantum critical point, separating the metallic phase, which is stabilized by electronic interactions, from the insulating phase, where disorder prevails over the electronic interactions, has been identified. The existence of the quantum critical point leads to a divergence in the density of states of the underlying collective modes at the transition, causing the thermodynamic properties to behave critically as the transition is approached. We show that the interplay of electron-electron interactions and disorder can explain the observed transport properties and the anomalous enhancement of the spin susceptibility near the metal-insulator transition.

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