Spin-orbit coupling in quasi-one-dimensional Wigner crystals

Viktoriia Kornich, Christopher J. Pedder, Thomas L. Schmidt
2017 Physical review B  
We study the effect of Rashba spin-orbit coupling (SOC) on the charge and spin degrees of freedom of a quasi-one-dimensional (quasi-1D) Wigner crystal. As electrons in a quasi-1D Wigner crystal can move in the transverse direction, SOC cannot be gauged away in contrast to the pure 1D case. We show that for weak SOC, a partial gap in the spectrum opens at certain ratios between density of electrons and the inverse Rashba length. We present how the low-energy branch of charge degrees of freedom
more » ... viates due to SOC from its usual linear dependence at small wave vectors. In the case of strong SOC, we show that spin sector of a Wigner crystal cannot be described by an isotropic antiferromagnetic Heisenberg Hamiltonian any more, and that instead the ground state of neighboring electrons is mostly a triplet state. We present a new spin sector Hamiltonian and discuss the spectrum of Wigner crystal in this limit.
doi:10.1103/physrevb.95.045413 fatcat:pxoxhf3xq5e5rbzis6rzeearb4