Distinguishing between non-abelian topological orders in a quantum Hall system

Science. 2022 Jan 14;375(6577):193-197. doi: 10.1126/science.abg6116. Epub 2021 Dec 23.


Quantum Hall states can harbor exotic quantum phases. The nature of these states is reflected in the gapless edge modes owing to “bulk-edge” correspondence. The most studied putative non-abelian state is the spin-polarized filling factor (ν) = 5/2, which permits different topological orders that can be abelian or non-abelian. We developed a method that interfaces the studied quantum state with another state and used it to identify the topological order of ν = 5/2 state. The interface between two half-planes, one hosting the ν = 5/2 state and the other an integer ν = 3 state, supports a fractional ν = 1/2 charge mode and a neutral Majorana mode. The counterpropagating chirality of the Majorana mode, probed by measuring partition noise, is consistent with the particle-hole Pfaffian (PH-Pf) topological order and rules out the anti-Pfaffian order.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't