Current address: Acoustics Division, Naval Research Laboratory, Washington, DC 20375, USA
Is it the boundaries or disorder that dominates electron transport in semiconductor `billiards'?
Article first published online: 18 JUN 2012
Copyright © 2013 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim
Fortschritte der Physik
Special Issue: Quantum Physics with non-Hermitian Operators: Theory and Experiment
Volume 61, Issue 2-3, pages 332–347, February 2013
How to Cite
Micolich, A.P., See, A.M., Scannell, B.C., Marlow, C.A., Martin, T.P., Pilgrim, I., Hamilton, A.R., Linke, H. and Taylor, R.P. (2013), Is it the boundaries or disorder that dominates electron transport in semiconductor `billiards'?. Fortschr. Phys., 61: 332–347. doi: 10.1002/prop.201200081
- Issue published online: 1 FEB 2013
- Article first published online: 18 JUN 2012
- Manuscript Accepted: 21 MAY 2012
- Manuscript Revised: 16 MAY 2012
- Manuscript Received: 15 APR 2012
- Quantum chaos;
- semiconductor billiards;
- quantum dots;
- ballistic transport.
Semiconductor billiards are often considered as ideal systems for studying dynamical chaos in the quantum mechanical limit. In the traditional picture, once the electron's mean free path, as determined by the mobility, becomes larger than the device, disorder is negligible and electron trajectories are shaped by specular reflection from the billiard walls alone. Experimental insight into the electron dynamics is normally obtained by magnetoconductance measurements. A number of recent experimental studies have shown these measurements to be largely independent of the billiard's exact shape, and highly dependent on sample-to-sample variations in disorder. In this paper, we discuss these more recent findings within the full historical context of work on semiconductor billiards, and offer strong evidence that small-angle scattering at the sub-100 nm length-scale dominates transport in these devices. This has important implications for the role these devices can play for experimental tests of ideas in quantum chaos.