Spin filter for arbitrary spins by substrate engineering

Biplab Pal, Rudolf A. Römer, Arunava Chakrabarti

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


We design spin filters for particles with potentially arbitrary spin using a one-dimensional periodic chain of magnetic atoms as a quantum device. Describing the system within a tight-binding formalism we present an analytical method to unravel the analogy between a one-dimensional magnetic chain and a multi-strand ladder network. This analogy is crucial, and is subsequently exploited to engineer gaps in the energy spectrum by an appropriate choice of the magnetic substrate. We obtain an exact correlation between the magnitude of the spin of the incoming beam of particles and the magnetic moment of the substrate atoms in the chain desired for opening up of a spectral gap. Results of spin polarized transport, calculated within a transfer matrix formalism, are presented for particles having half-integer as well as higher spin states. We find that the chain can be made to act as a quantum device which opens a transmission window only for selected spin components over certain ranges of the Fermi energy, blocking them in the remaining part of the spectrum. The results appear to be robust even when the choice of the substrate atoms deviates substantially from the ideal situation, as verified by extending the ideas to the case of a 'spin spiral'. Interestingly, the spin spiral geometry, apart from exhibiting the filtering effect, is also seen to act as a device flipping spins - an effect that can be monitored by an interplay of the system size and the period of the spiral. Our scheme is applicable to ultracold quantum gases, and might inspire future experiments in this direction.

Original languageEnglish
Article number335301
JournalJournal of Physics Condensed Matter
Issue number33
StatePublished - 28 Jun 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • band engineering
  • magnetic chain
  • spin filter
  • spin spiral
  • tight-binding model
  • transfer matrix method

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Materials Science
  • Condensed Matter Physics


Dive into the research topics of 'Spin filter for arbitrary spins by substrate engineering'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this