Scientists have discovered Majorana fermions on the surface of gold. This is stated in a study by physicists from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, which is published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
In 1937, physicist Ettore Majorana, analyzing the Dirac equation for a moving electron, calculated that it can exist not only as a particle or antiparticle but also combine both of these states at the same time. This state of particles is of great interest to physicists since their unique properties will make it possible to create a full-fledged topological quantum computer.
The name “particles of an angel” Majorana fermion received by analogy with the “particle of God”, which was given to the Higgs boson.
About 30 times, physicists in their studies stated that they discovered this particle, but almost all of these works were disproved.
In a new study, physicists from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology stated that they were able to observe such particles on the surface of gold. For detection, they used a system of gold nanowires with a thickness of about 4 nanometers with interspersed ferromagnets (europium sulfide) on a superconducting vanadium substrate.
Using tunneling microscopy technology, the researchers were able to find signal peaks that, according to previous theories, could only be generated by pairs of Majorana fermions.