New Massless Charged Magnet Discovered

New Massless Charged Magnet Discovered

Advances in electronics has led to an increased demand for nanotechnology, in recent times. Small silicon transistors of 10 nanometers, which could not function effectively due to heat production in devices, can now be used due to the creation of energy-saving information technology.

Scientists from LaCNS, Oak Ridge National Lab, National High Magnetic Field Laboratory, Florida State University, and the University of New Orleans discovered a new class of relativistic quantum material by observing topological behavior in a magnet. This could hold great potential for application in energy saving electronics, according to a study published in Nature Materials on July 28, 2017.

“This first observation is a significant milestone in the advancement of novel quantum materials and this discovery opens the opportunity to explore its consequences. The nearly massless behavior of the charge carriers offers possibilities for novel device concepts taking advantage of the extremely low power dissipation,” said DiTusa, one of the researchers.

Topological materials are those materials in which current carrying electrons behave as massless electrons, possessing properties similar to that of photons – the particles that make up light. These electronic states are protected from scattering by symmetry, thus making them healthy, immune to any defects. This symmetry protection causes exceptionally high charge carrier mobility, resulting in a resistance-free current flow. This enormously reduces the heat being produced in the device saving ample of energy.

This new magnet has electronic charge carriers that are almost massless. The magnetism has a symmetry breaking property which does not reverse the system back to its starting conditions on reversal of time called time, called the time reversal symmetry (TRS). The combination of TRS breaking and relativistic electron behavior, is predicted to cause more reduced charged mass which could be useful to study the evidence of the Weyl phase by easily uncovering its consequences.

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