Volume 80, Number 2, October 2007
Article Number 27003
Number of page(s) 6
Section Condensed Matter: Electronic Structure, Electrical, Magnetic and Optical Properties
Published online 19 September 2007
EPL, 80 (2007) 27003
DOI: 10.1209/0295-5075/80/27003

Bloch's theory in periodic structures with Rashba's spin-orbit interaction

S. Smirnov1, D. Bercioux1, 2 and M. Grifoni1

1  Institut für Theoretische Physik, Universität Regensburg - D-93040 Regensburg, Germany
2  Physikalische Institut, Albert-Ludwigs-Universität - D-79104 Freiburg, Germany

received 25 May 2007; accepted in final form 28 August 2007; published October 2007
published online 19 September 2007

We consider a two-dimensional electron gas with Rashba's spin-orbit interaction and two in-plane potentials superimposed along directions perpendicular to each other. The first of these potentials is assumed to be a general periodic potential while the second one is totally arbitrary. A general form for Bloch's amplitude is found and an eigen-value problem for the band structure of the system is derived. We apply the general result to the two particular cases in which either the second potential represents a harmonic in-plane confinement or it is zero. We find that for a harmonic confinement regions of the Brillouin zone with high polarizations are associated with the ones of large group velocity.

72.25.Dc - Spin polarized transport in semiconductors.
73.21.Hb - Quantum wires.
73.23.-b - Electronic transport in mesoscopic systems.

© Europhysics Letters Association 2007