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Title:  Dynamic Mesoscopic Conductors: Single Electron Sources, Full Counting Statistics, and Thermal Machines
Author:  Patrick P. Potts
As Contributor:   Patrick Potts
Type: Ph.D.
Field: Physics
  • Quantum Physics
Approach: Theoretical
Degree granting institution:  University of Geneva
Supervisor(s): Markus B├╝ttiker, Eugene Sukhorukov, Christian Flindt
Defense date:  2016-10-25


We theoretically investigate questions regarding the controlled emission and entanglement of individual electrons in mesoscopic circuits, the statistics of current fluctuations and electron waiting times for phase-coherent quantum transport, and thermal machines such as heat engines and refrigerators at the nano-scale. Chapter 2 focuses on dynamic single-electron sources, specifically on the generation of ac spin currents in topological insulators, Mach-Zehnder interferometry with periodic voltage pulses, and the on-demand entanglement of few-electron excitations. In Chapter 3, we present a novel theory for joint electron waiting times and we connect the occurrence of negative values in the full counting statistics to a peculiar interference effect. Chapter 4 discusses a heat engine based on the interference in a Mach-Zehnder interferometer as well as implementations for the arguably smallest thermal machines making use of a Josephson junction coupled to harmonic oscillators.

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