Volume 87, Number 4, August 2009
Article Number 47004
Number of page(s) 6
Section Condensed Matter: Electronic Structure, Electrical, Magnetic and Optical Properties
Published online 07 September 2009
EPL, 87 (2009) 47004
DOI: 10.1209/0295-5075/87/47004

Detection of spin bias by quantum interference effect in a Rashba ring

F. Liang1, Y. H. Yang1, J. Wang1, 2 and K. S. Chan2

1   Department of Physics, Southeast University - Nanjing 210096, China
2   Department of Physics and Materials Science, City University of Hong Kong - Tat Chee Avenue, Kowloon, Hong Kong, China

received 10 April 2009; accepted in final form 5 August 2009; published August 2009
published online 7 September 2009

We propose to use the quantum interference effect in a Rashba ring to detect the pure spin current driven by a spin bias. By means of the Keldysh Green's function method, we demonstrated that a tunneling charge current could be induced flowing through the ring due to the combined quantum interference effect of the electron spin precession phase from Rashba spin-orbit coupling (RSOC) and the electron traveling phase difference in the two arms of the ring. The nonzero charge current can be used to deduce not only the magnitude of the spin bias but also its spin polarization. This charge current depends on some system parameters such as RSOC strength and the asymmetry of two arms. Our proposal may provide a practical and all-electrical way to indirectly detect the pure spin current (spin bias) by measuring the induced charge current/bias in a Rashba ring.

72.25.Dc - Spin polarized transport in semiconductors.
73.23.-b - Electronic transport in mesoscopic systems.
73.63.-b - Electronic transport in nanoscale materials and structures.

© EPLA 2009