Detection of spin polarization in quantum point contacts

Leonid P. Rokhinson, Birck Nanotechnology Center, Purdue University
Loren N. Pfeiffer, Lucent Technologies, Bell Labs
Kenw W. West, Lucent Technologies, Bell Labs

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We use spatial spin separation by a magnetic focusing technique to probe the polarization of quantum point contacts. The point contacts are fabricated from p-type GaAs/AlGaAs heterostructures. A finite polarization is measured in the low density regime, when the conductance of a point contact is tuned to < 2e(2)/h. Polarization is stronger in samples with a well defined '0.7 structure'.