Abstract:
The unique electronic properties of the surface electrons in a topological insulator are protected by time-reversal symmetry. Circularly polarized light naturally breaks time-reversal symmetry, which may lead to an exotic surface quantum Hall state. Using time- and angle-resolved photoemission spectroscopy, we show that an intense ultrashort mid-infrared pulse with energy below the bulk band gap hybridizes with the surface Dirac fermions of a topological insulator to form Floquet-Bloch bands. These photon dressed surface bands exhibit polarization-dependent band gaps at avoided crossings. Circularly polarized photons induce an additional gap at the Dirac point, which is a signature of broken time-reversal symmetry on the surface. These observations establish the Floquet-Bloch bands in solids and pave the way for optical manipulation of topological quantum states of matter.

Abstract:
We report on low temperature measurements in a fully tunable carbon nanotube double quantum dot. A new fabrication technique has been used for the top-gates in order to avoid covering the whole nanotube with an oxide layer as in previous experiments. The top-gates allow us to form single dots, control the coupling between them and we observe four-fold shell filling. We perform inelastic transport spectroscopy via the excited states in the double quantum dot, a necessary step towards the implementation of new microwave-based experiments.

Abstract:
Three-dimensional topological insulators represent a new quantum phase of matter with spin-polarized surface states that are protected from backscattering. The static electronic properties of these surface states have been comprehensively imaged by both photoemission and tunneling spectroscopies. Theorists have proposed that topological surface states can also exhibit novel electronic responses to light, such as topological quantum phase transitions and spin-polarized electrical currents. However, the effects of optically driving a topological insulator out of equilibrium have remained largely unexplored experimentally, and no photocurrents have been measured. Here we show that illuminating the topological insulator Bi2Se3 with circularly polarized light generates a photocurrent that originates from topological helical Dirac fermions, and that reversing the helicity of the light reverses the direction of the photocurrent. We also observe a photocurrent that is controlled by the linear polarization of light, and argue that it may also have a topological surface state origin. This approach may allow the probing of dynamic properties of topological insulators and lead to novel opto-spintronic devices.

Abstract:
Electronic transport through nanostructures is greatly affected by the presence of superconducting leads. If the interface between the nanostructure and the superconductors is sufficiently transparent, a dissipationless current (supercurrent) can flow through the device due to the Josephson effect. A Josephson coupling, as measured via the zero-resistance supercurrent, has been obtained via tunnel barriers, superconducting constrictions, normal metals, and semiconductors. The coupling mechanisms vary from tunneling to Andreev reflection. The latter process has always occurred via a normal-type system with a continuous density of states. Here we investigate a supercurrent flowing via a discrete density of states, i.e., the quantized single particle energy states of a quantum dot, or artificial atom, placed in between superconducting electrodes. For this purpose, we exploit the quantum properties of finite-sized carbon nanotubes (CNTs). By means of a gate electrode, successive discrete energy states are tuned ON and OFF resonance with the Fermi energy in the superconducting leads, resulting in a periodic modulation of the critical current and a non-trivial correlation between the conductance in the normal state and the supercurrent. We find, in good agreement with existing theory, that the product of the critical current and the normal state resistance becomes an oscillating function, in contrast to being constant as in previously explored regimes.

Abstract:
The advent of few-layer graphenes has given rise to a new family of two-dimensional systems with emergent electronic properties governed by relativistic quantum mechanics. The multiple carbon sublattices endow the electronic wavefunctions with pseudospin, a lattice analog of the relativistic electron spin, while the multilayer structure leads to electric field effect tunable electronic bands. Here we use these properties to realize giant conductance oscillations in ballistic trilayer graphene Fabry-Perot interferometers, which result from phase coherent transport through resonant bound states beneath an electrostatic barrier. We cloak these states by selectively decoupling them from the leads, resulting in transport via non-resonant states and suppression of the giant oscillations. Cloaking is achieved both classically, by manipulating quasiparticle momenta with a magnetic field, and quantum mechanically, by locally varying the pseudospin character of the carrier wavefunctions. Our results illustrate the unique potential of trilayer graphene as a versatile platform for electron optics and pseudospintronics.

Abstract:
We report magnetic field spectroscopy measurements in carbon nanotube quantum dots exhibiting four-fold shell structure in the energy level spectrum. The magnetic field induces a large splitting between the two orbital states of each shell, demonstrating their opposite magnetic moment and determining transitions in the spin and orbital configuration of the quantum dot ground state. We use inelastic cotunneling spectroscopy to accurately resolve the spin and orbital contributions to the magnetic moment. A small coupling is found between orbitals with opposite magnetic moment leading to anticrossing behavior at zero field.

Abstract:
We have studied the discrete electronic spectrum of closed metallic nanotube quantum dots. At low temperatures, the stability diagrams show a very regular four-fold pattern that allows for the determination of the electron addition and excitation energies. The measured nanotube spectra are in excellent agreement with theoretical predictions based on the nanotube band structure. Our results permit the complete identification of the electron quantum states in nanotube quantum dots.

Abstract:
Current-voltage characteristics of suspended single-wall carbon nanotube quantum dots show a series of steps equally spaced in voltage. The energy scale of this harmonic, low-energy excitation spectrum is consistent with that of the longitudinal low-k phonon mode (stretching mode) in the nanotube. Agreement is found with a Franck-Condon-based model in which the phonon-assisted tunneling process is modeled as a coupling of electronic levels to underdamped quantum harmonic oscillators. Comparison with this model indicates a rather strong electron-phonon coupling factor of order unity.

Abstract:
Progress in the fabrication of nanometer-scale electronic devices is opening new opportunities to uncover the deepest aspects of the Kondo effect, one of the paradigmatic phenomena in the physics of strongly correlated electrons. Artificial single-impurity Kondo systems have been realized in various nanostructures, including semiconductor quantum dots, carbon nanotubes and individual molecules. The Kondo effect is usually regarded as a spin-related phenomenon, namely the coherent exchange of the spin between a localized state and a Fermi sea of electrons. In principle, however, the role of the spin could be replaced by other degrees of freedom, such as an orbital quantum number. Here we demonstrate that the unique electronic structure of carbon nanotubes enables the observation of a purely orbital Kondo effect. We use a magnetic field to tune spin-polarized states into orbital degeneracy and conclude that the orbital quantum number is conserved during tunneling. When orbital and spin degeneracies are simultaneously present, we observe a strongly enhanced Kondo effect, with a multiple splitting of the Kondo resonance at finite field and predicted to obey a so-called SU(4) symmetry.

Abstract:
Optical and electronic phenomena in solids arise from the behaviour of electrons and holes (unoccupied states in a filled electron sea). Electron-hole symmetry can often be invoked as a simplifying description, which states that electrons with energy above the Fermi sea behave the same as holes below the Fermi energy. In semiconductors, however, electron-hole symmetry is generally absent since the energy band structure of the conduction band differs from the valence band. Here we report on measurements of the discrete, quantized-energy spectrum of electrons and holes in a semiconducting carbon nanotube. Through a gate, an individual nanotube is filled controllably with a precise number of either electrons or holes, starting from one. The discrete excitation spectrum for a nanotube with N holes is strikingly similar to the corresponding spectrum for N electrons. This observation of near perfect electron-hole symmetry demonstrates for the first time that a semiconducting nanotube can be free of charged impurities, even in the limit of few-electrons or holes. We furthermore find an anomalously small Zeeman spin splitting and an excitation spectrum indicating strong electron-electron interactions.