Joseph Maciejko, Department of Physics, University of Alberta, Edmonton, AB T6G 2E1 Canada.
Topological insulators are an unusual class of insulators whose surfaces can carry electric currents while their bulk cannot. This surface conduction proceeds with little or no dissipation of heat, which makes topological insulators promising materials for low-power electronics. Intriguing phenomena also occur when a topological insulator is interfaced with a different material such as a ferromagnet or a superconductor. In this talk I will explain the basic physical principles underlying topological insulators, and argue that these materials are a potential platform for observing exotic effects predicted in elementary particle physics such as Majorana fermions, axions, and supersymmetry.
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