Abstract:
We study spin-dependent transport through ferromagnet/normal-metal/ferromagnet double tunnel junctions in the mesoscopic Coulomb blockade regime. A general transport equation allows us to calculate the conductance in the absence or presence of spin-orbit interaction and for arbitrary orientation of the lead magnetizations. The tunneling magnetoresistance (TMR), defined at the Coulomb blockade conductance peaks, is calculated and its probability distribution presented. We show that mesoscopic fluctuations can lead to the optimal value of the TMR.

Abstract:
We study the statistics of the spacing between Coulomb blockade conductance peaks in quantum dots with large dimensionless conductance g. Our starting point is the ``universal Hamiltonian''--valid in the g->oo limit--which includes the charging energy, the single-electron energies (described by random matrix theory), and the average exchange interaction. We then calculate the magnitude of the most relevant finite g corrections, namely, the effect of surface charge, the ``gate'' effect, and the fluctuation of the residual e-e interaction. The resulting zero-temperature peak spacing distribution has corrections of order Delta/sqrt(g). For typical values of the e-e interaction (r_s ~ 1) and simple geometries, theory does indeed predict an asymmetric distribution with a significant even/odd effect. The width of the distribution is of order 0.3 Delta, and its dominant feature is a large peak for the odd case, reminiscent of the delta-function in the g->oo limit. We consider finite temperature effects next. Only after their inclusion is good agreement with the experimental results obtained. Even relatively low temperature causes large modifications in the peak spacing distribution: (a) its peak is dominated by the even distribution at kT ~ 0.3 Delta (at lower T a double peak appears); (b) it becomes more symmetric; (c) the even/odd effect is considerably weaker; (d) the delta-function is completely washed-out; and (e) fluctuation of the coupling to the leads becomes relevant. Experiments aimed at observing the T=0 peak spacing distribution should therefore be done at kT<0.1 Delta for typical values of the e-e interaction.

Abstract:
We study the decoherence of a quantum computer in an environment which is inherently correlated in time and space. We first derive the nonunitary time evolution of the computer and environment in the presence of a stabilizer error correction code, providing a general way to quantify decoherence for a quantum computer. The general theory is then applied to the spin-boson model. Our results demonstrate that effects of long-range correlations can be systematically reduced by small changes in the error correction codes.

Abstract:
We use random matrix models to investigate the ground state energy of electrons confined to a nanoparticle. Our expression for the energy includes the charging effect, the single-particle energies, and the residual screened interactions treated in Hartree-Fock. This model is applicable to chaotic quantum dots or nanoparticles--in these systems the single-particle statistics follows random matrix theory at energy scales less than the Thouless energy. We find the distribution of Coulomb blockade peak spacings first for a large dot in which the residual interactions can be taken constant: the spacing fluctuations are of order the mean level separation Delta. Corrections to this limit are studied using the small parameter 1/(kf L): both the residual interactions and the effect of the changing confinement on the single-particle levels produce fluctuations of order Delta/sqrt(kf L). The distributions we find are significantly more like the experimental results than the simple constant interaction model.

Abstract:
For Coulomb blockade peaks in the linear conductance of a quantum dot, we study the correction to the spacing between the peaks due to dot-lead coupling. This coupling can affect measurements in which Coulomb blockade phenomena are used as a tool to probe the energy level structure of quantum dots. The electron-electron interactions in the quantum dot are described by the constant exchange and interaction (CEI) model while the single-particle properties are described by random matrix theory. We find analytic expressions for both the average and rms mesoscopic fluctuation of the correction. For a realistic value of the exchange interaction constant J_s, the ensemble average correction to the peak spacing is two to three times smaller than that at J_s = 0. As a function of J_s, the average correction to the peak spacing for an even valley decreases monotonically, nonetheless staying positive. The rms fluctuation is of the same order as the average and weakly depends on J_s. For a small fraction of quantum dots in the ensemble, therefore, the correction to the peak spacing for the even valley is negative. The correction to the spacing in the odd valleys is opposite in sign to that in the even valleys and equal in magnitude. These results are robust with respect to the choice of the random matrix ensemble or change in parameters such as charging energy, mean level spacing, or temperature.

Abstract:
We study the effect of the exchange interaction on the Coulomb blockade peak height statistics in chaotic quantum dots. Because exchange reduces the level repulsion in the many body spectrum, it strongly affects the fluctuations of the peak conductance at finite temperature. We find that including exchange substantially improves the description of the experimental data. Moreover, it provides further evidence of the presence of high spin states (S>1) in such systems.

Abstract:
We calculate the Coulomb Blockade peak spacing distribution at finite temperature using the recently introduced ``universal Hamiltonian'' to describe the e-e interactions. We show that the temperature effect is important even at kT~0.1\Delta (\Delta is the single-particle mean level spacing). This sensitivity arises because: (1) exchange reduces the minimum energy of excitation from the ground state and (2) the entropic contribution depends on the change of the spin of the quantum dot. Including the leading corrections to the universal Hamiltonian yields results in quantitative agreement with the experiments. Surprisingly, temperature appears to be the most important effect.

Abstract:
The effect of silicon-oxide interface roughness on the weak-localization magnetoconductance of a silicon MOSFET in a magnetic field, tilted with respect to the interface, is studied. It is shown that an electron picks up a random Berry's phase as it traverses a closed orbit. Effectively, due to roughness, the electron sees an uniform field parallel to the interface as a random perpendicular field. At zero parallel field the dependence of the conductance on the perpendicular field has a well known form, the weak-localization lineshape. Here the effect of applying a fixed parallel field on the lineshape is analyzed. Many types of behavior are found including homogeneous broadening, inhomogeneous broadening and a remarkable regime in which the change in lineshape depends only on the magnetic field, the two length scales that characterize the interface roughness and fundamental constants. Good agreement is obtained with experiments that are in the homogeneous broadening limit. The implications for using weak-localization magnetoconductance as a probe of interface roughness, as proposed by Wheeler and coworkers, are discussed.

Abstract:
We calculate the mesoscopic fluctuations of the magnetic anisotropy of ferromagnetic nanoparticles. A microscopic spin-orbit Hamiltonian considered as a perturbation of the much stronger exchange interaction first yields an explicit expression for the anisotropy tensor. Then, assuming a simple random matrix model for the spin-orbit coupling allows us to describe the fluctuation of such a tensor. In the case of uniaxial anisotropy, we calculate the distribution of the anisotropy constant for a given number of electrons, and its variation upon increasing this number by one. The magnitude of the latter is sufficient to account for the experimental data.

Abstract:
We study photon-photon correlations and entanglement generation in a one-dimensional waveguide coupled to two qubits with an arbitrary spatial separation. We develop a novel Green function method to study vacuum-mediated qubit-qubit interactions, including both spontaneous and coherent couplings. As a result of these interactions, quantum beats appear in the second-order correlation function. We go beyond the Markovian regime and observe that such quantum beats persist much longer than the qubit life time. Using these non-Markovian processes, a high degree of long-distance entanglement can be generated, making waveguide-QED systems promising candidates for scalable quantum networking.