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Emergence of Majorana and Dirac particles in ultracold fermions via tunable interactions, spin-orbit effects, and Zeeman fields.

Authors
Type
Published Article
Journal
Physical Review Letters
1079-7114
Publisher
American Physical Society
Publication Date
Volume
109
Issue
10
Pages
105303–105303
Identifiers
PMID: 23005296
Source
Medline

Abstract

We discuss the emergence of rings of zero-energy excitations in momentum space for superfluid phases of ultracold fermions when spin-orbit effects, Zeeman fields, and interactions are varied. We show that phases containing rings of nodes possess nontrivial topological invariants, and that phase transitions between distinct topological phases belong to the Lifshitz class. Upon crossing phase boundaries, existing massless Dirac fermions in the gapless phase annihilate to produce bulk zero-mode Majorana fermions at phase boundaries, and then become massive Dirac fermions in the gapped phase. We characterize these tunable topological phase transitions via several spectroscopic properties, including excitation spectrum, spectral function, and momentum distribution.

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