Song, A. M. and Lorke, A. and Kriele, A. and Kotthaus, J.P. and Wegscheider, Werner and Bichler, Max
Nonlinear Electron Transport in an Asymmetric Microjunction: A Ballistic Rectifier.
Physical Review Letters 80 (17), pp. 3831-3834.
An asymmetric artificial scatterer in a semiconductor microjunction is shown to dramatically affect the nonlinear transport of ballistic electrons. The chosen device geometry, defined in a GaAs-AlGaAs heterostructure, successfully guides carriers in a predetermined spatial direction, independent of the direction of the input current I. From the nonlinear current-voltage characteristic we obtain unusual symmetry relations for the four-terminal resistances with Rij,kl(I)≈-Rij,kl(-I) and Rij,kl(B)≫Rkl,ij(-B) even at zero magnetic field B. The ballistic rectifier thus realized relies on a new kind of rectification mechanism entirely different from that of an ordinary diode.