Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Electrons moving in a magnetic field exhibit strange quantum behavior

Date:
August 8, 2014
Source:
RIKEN
Summary:
Researchers have made the first direct observations of free-electron Landau states -— a form of quantized states that electrons adopt when moving through a magnetic field- — and found that the internal rotational dynamics of quantum electrons, or how they move through the field, is surprisingly different from the classical model, and in line with recent quantum-mechanical predictions.

Researchers Franco Nori and Konstantin Bliokh from the RIKEN Center for Emergent Matter Science in Japan, in collaboration with an experimental team in Austria, have made the first direct observations of free-electron Landau states -- a form of quantized states that electrons adopt when moving through a magnetic field -- and found that the internal rotational dynamics of quantum electrons, or how they move through the field, is surprisingly different from the classical model, and in line with recent quantum-mechanical predictions made at RIKEN.

The dynamic behavior of electrons in magnetic fields is crucial for understanding physical processes, such as the quantum Hall effect, which are important in many areas of solid state physics, including electrical conductivity. Yet, there is much that remains unknown about exactly how electrons behave in a magnetic field.

In research published today in Nature Communications, researchers Franco Nori and Konstantin Bliokh from the RIKEN Center for Emergent Matter Science in Japan, in collaboration with an experimental team in Austria, have made the first direct observations of free-electron Landau states -- a form of quantized states that electrons adopt when moving through a magnetic field -- and found that the internal rotational dynamics of quantum electrons, or how they move through the field, is surprisingly different from the classical model, and in line with recent quantum-mechanical predictions made at RIKEN.

The experimental team used a transmission electron microscope to generate nanometer-sized electron vortex beams in which the electrons had a variety of quantum angular-momentum states, and then analyzed the beam propagation to reconstruct the rotational dynamics of the electrons in different Landau states. According to classical physics, the electrons should rotate uniformly at what is called the cyclotron frequency, the frequency adopted by a charged particle moving through a magnetic field. Remarkably, what the researchers discovered is that in fact, depending on the quantum number describing the angular momentum, the electrons rotated in three different ways with zero frequency, the cyclotron frequency, and the Larmor frequency, which is half the cyclotron frequency. This shows that the rotational dynamics of the electrons are more complex and intriguing than was once believed.

According to Franco Nori, who leads the RIKEN team, "This is a very exciting finding, and it will contribute to a better understanding of the fundamental quantum features of electrons in magnetic fields, and help us to reach a better understanding of Landau states and various related physical phenomena."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by RIKEN. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. P. Schattschneider, Th. Schachinger, M. Stφger-Pollach, S. Lφffler, A. Steiger-Thirsfeld, K. Y. Bliokh, Franco Nori. Imaging the dynamics of free-electron Landau states. Nature Communications, 2014; 5 DOI: 10.1038/ncomms5586

Cite This Page:

RIKEN. "Electrons moving in a magnetic field exhibit strange quantum behavior." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 8 August 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/08/140808110707.htm>.
RIKEN. (2014, August 8). Electrons moving in a magnetic field exhibit strange quantum behavior. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 20, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/08/140808110707.htm
RIKEN. "Electrons moving in a magnetic field exhibit strange quantum behavior." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/08/140808110707.htm (accessed October 20, 2014).

Share This



More Matter & Energy News

Monday, October 20, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

'Robotic Eyes' Helps Japan's Bipedal Bot Run Faster

'Robotic Eyes' Helps Japan's Bipedal Bot Run Faster

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Oct. 16, 2014) — Japanese researcher uses an eye-sensor camera to enable a bipedal robot to balance itself, while running on a treadmill. Jim Drury reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Lockheed Martin's Fusion Concept Basically An Advertisement

Lockheed Martin's Fusion Concept Basically An Advertisement

Newsy (Oct. 15, 2014) — Lockheed Martin announced plans to develop the first-ever compact nuclear fusion reactor. But some experts said the excitement is a little premature. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
First Confirmed Case Of Google Glass Addiction

First Confirmed Case Of Google Glass Addiction

Buzz60 (Oct. 15, 2014) — A Google Glass user was treated for Internet Addiction Disorder caused from overuse of the device. Morgan Manousos (@MorganManousos) has the details on how many hours he spent wearing the glasses, and what his symptoms were. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Science Proves Why Pizza Is So Delicious

Science Proves Why Pizza Is So Delicious

Buzz60 (Oct. 15, 2014) — The American Chemical Society’s latest video about chemistry in every day life breaks down pizza, and explains exactly why it's so delicious. Gillian Pensavalle (@GillianWithaG) has the video. Video provided by Buzz60
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:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Space & Time

Matter & Energy

Computers & Math

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