Research Article

Nonlocal Transport in the Quantum Spin Hall State

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Science  17 Jul 2009:
Vol. 325, Issue 5938, pp. 294-297
DOI: 10.1126/science.1174736

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Nonlocal transport through edge channels holds great promise for low-power information processing. However, edge channels have so far only been demonstrated to occur in the quantum Hall regime, at high magnetic fields. We found that mercury telluride quantum wells in the quantum spin Hall regime exhibit nonlocal edge channel transport at zero external magnetic field. The data confirm that the quantum transport through the (helical) edge channels is dissipationless and that the contacts lead to equilibration between the counterpropagating spin states at the edge. The experimental data agree quantitatively with the theory of the quantum spin Hall effect. The edge channel transport paves the way for a new generation of spintronic devices for low-power information processing.

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