Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Physicists study fast-moving electrons in graphene as a model laboratory for massless particles

Date:
October 31, 2012
Source:
Springer Science+Business Media
Summary:
A team of physicists from Europe and South Africa has shown that electrons moving randomly in graphene can mimic the dynamics of particles such as cosmic rays, despite travelling at a fraction of their speed.

A team of physicists from Europe and South Africa showed that electrons moving randomly in graphene can mimic the dynamics of particles such as cosmic rays, despite travelling at a fraction of their speed, in a paper about to be published in EPJ B.

Andrey Pototsky and colleagues made use of their knowledge of graphene, which is made of a carbon layer, one atom thick, and packed in a honeycomb lattice pattern. In such material the interaction of electrons with atoms changes the effective mass of the electrons. As a result, the energy of electrons in graphene becomes similar to the photon energy.

Therefore, electrons in graphene can be regarded as behaving like cosmic rays, which belong to a family known as ultra-relativistic particles, even though their actual velocity is one hundred times lower than the speed of light.

The authors employed the classical equations used to describe random motion -- so-called Brownian motion -- to study the dynamics of electrons within the confines of their graphene mini-laboratory. They considered different graphene chip geometries and subjected them to changing conditions that affect the way these electrons diffuse through the material, such as temperature and electric field strength.

Going one step further, the authors were able to rectify electron fluctuations and to control the electron motion itself, from an unusual chaotic type of motion to a periodic movement, by varying the electric field.

Future work would experimentally demonstrate how variation of the temperature can be used positively to enhance the performance of graphene chips by gaining a greater control over electron transport. Such graphene mini-labs could also ultimately help us to understand the dynamics of matter and anti-matter in cosmic rays.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Springer Science+Business Media. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. A. Pototsky, F. Marchesoni, F. V. Kusmartsev, P. Hänggi, S. E. Savel’ev. Relativistic Brownian motion on a graphene chip. The European Physical Journal B, 2012; 85 (10) DOI: 10.1140/epjb/e2012-30716-7

Cite This Page:

Springer Science+Business Media. "Physicists study fast-moving electrons in graphene as a model laboratory for massless particles." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 31 October 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/10/121031110744.htm>.
Springer Science+Business Media. (2012, October 31). Physicists study fast-moving electrons in graphene as a model laboratory for massless particles. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 31, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/10/121031110744.htm
Springer Science+Business Media. "Physicists study fast-moving electrons in graphene as a model laboratory for massless particles." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/10/121031110744.htm (accessed July 31, 2014).

Share This




More Matter & Energy News

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Britain Testing Driverless Cars on Roadways

Britain Testing Driverless Cars on Roadways

AP (July 30, 2014) — British officials said on Wednesday that driverless cars will be tested on roads in as many as three cities in a trial program set to begin in January. Officials said the tests will last up to three years. (July 30) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Amid Drought, UCLA Sees Only Water

Amid Drought, UCLA Sees Only Water

AP (July 30, 2014) — A ruptured 93-year-old water main left the UCLA campus awash in 8 million gallons of water in the middle of California's worst drought in decades. (July 30) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Smartphone Powered Paper Plane Debuts at Airshow

Smartphone Powered Paper Plane Debuts at Airshow

AP (July 30, 2014) — Smartphone powered paper airplane that was popular on crowdfunding website KickStarter makes its debut at Wisconsin airshow (July 30) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
U.K. To Allow Driverless Cars On Public Roads

U.K. To Allow Driverless Cars On Public Roads

Newsy (July 30, 2014) — Driverless cars could soon become a staple on U.K. city streets, as they're set to be introduced to a few cities in 2015. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

    Environment News

    Technology News



      Save/Print:
      Share:  

      Free Subscriptions


      Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

      Get Social & Mobile


      Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

      Have Feedback?


      Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
      Mobile iPhone Android Web
      Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
      Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
      Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins