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A scheme for the generation of a photocurrent in bent quantum wires is proposed. We calculate the current using a generalized Landauer-Büttiker approach that takes into account the electromagnetic radiation. For circularly polarized light, it is demonstrated that the curvature in the bent wire induces an asymmetry in the scattering coefficients for left and right moving electrons. This asymmetry results in a current at zero bias voltage. The effect is due to the geometry of the wire which transforms the photon angular momentum into translational motion for the electrons. Possible experimental realizations of this scheme are discussed.


Pershin, Y. V., & Piermarocchi, C. (2005). Photovoltaic effect in bent quantum wires in the ballistic transport regime. Physical Review B, 72(19), 195340-1 - 195340-4. DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevB.72.195340

© Physical Review B, 2005, American Physical Society

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