Thermal and Quantum Melting Phase Diagrams for a Magnetic-Field-Induced Wigner Solid
Physical Review Letters
A sufficiently large perpendicular magnetic field quenches the kinetic (Fermi) energy of an interacting two-dimensional (2D) system of fermions, making them susceptible to the formation of a Wigner solid (WS) phase in which the charged carriers organize themselves in a periodic array in order to minimize their Coulomb repulsion energy. In low-disorder 2D electron systems confined to modulation-doped GaAs heterostructures, signatures of a magnetic-field-induced WS appear at low temperatures and very small Landau level filling factors (ν≃1/5). In dilute GaAs 2D hole systems, on the other hand, thanks to the larger hole effective mass and the ensuing Landau level mixing, the WS forms at relatively higher fillings (ν≃1/3). Here we report our measurements of the fundamental temperature vs filling phase diagram for the 2D holes' WS-liquid thermal melting. Moreover, via changing the 2D hole density, we also probe their Landau level mixing vs filling WS-liquid quantum melting phase diagram. We find our data to be in good agreement with the results of very recent calculations, although intriguing subtleties remain.
Ma, Meng K.; Villegas Rosales, K. A.; Deng, H.; Chung, Y. J.; Pfeiffer, L. N.; West, K. W.; Baldwin, K. W.; Winkler, Roland; and Shayegan, M., "Thermal and Quantum Melting Phase Diagrams for a Magnetic-Field-Induced Wigner Solid" (2020). NIU Bibliography. 478.
Department of Physics