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Electron spin influences nanotube motion

from American Physical Society

Theoretical work reported in Physical Review Letters demonstrates that the spin of a single electron trapped on a carbon nanotube may influence — and be influenced by — the vibrations of the nanotube via spin-orbit coupling. Delocalized electrons on carbon nanotubes follow circular orbits around the tube circumference. The orbit of the electron is affected by, and affects, the lattice geometry. Because of the strong spin-orbit coupling, the electron's spin can switch direction under the influence of an external magnetic field. In order to maximize the effect on the spin, the researchers found that the magnetic field strength must be set so that the energy difference between the two spin states matches the energy of the nanotube vibration. more

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