Non-equilibrium 8 pi Josephson effect in atomic Kitaev wires

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2016-02-18 - 2016-06-07

C. Laflamme, J. C. Budich, P. Zoller, M. Dalmonte



We theoretically study a Kitaev wire interrupted by an extra site which gives rise to super exchange coupling between two Majorana bound states. We show that this system hosts a tunable, non-equlibrium Josephson effect with a characteristic 8π periodicity of the Josephson current. We elucidate the physical mechanism deriving a minimal model for the junction and confirm its quantitative accuracy by comparison to the numerical solution of the full model. The visibility of the 8π periodicity of the Josephson current is then studied using time-dependent simulations including the effects of dephasing and particle losses. Our findings provide a novel signature of Majorana quasi-particles which is qualitatively different form the behavior of a conventional superconductor, and can be experimentally verified in cold atom systems using alkaline-earth-like atoms.