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Journal Article

Giant Faraday rotation in single- and multilayer graphene


Walter,  Andrew L.
Molecular Physics, Fritz Haber Institute, Max Planck Society;
E. O. Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Advanced Light Source;

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Crassee, I., Levallois, J., Walter, A. L., Ostler, M., Bostwick, A., Rotenberg, E., et al. (2011). Giant Faraday rotation in single- and multilayer graphene. Nature Physics, 7(1), 48-51. doi:10.1038/nphys1816.

Cite as: https://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-000F-3D7C-9
The rotation of the polarization of light after passing a medium in a magnetic field, discovered by Faraday, is an optical analogue of the Hall effect, which combines sensitivity to the carrier type with access to a broad energy range. Up to now the thinnest structures showing the Faraday rotation were several-nanometre-thick two-dimensional electron gases. As the rotation angle is proportional to the distance travelled by the light, an intriguing issue is the scale of this effect in two-dimensional atomic crystals or films—the ultimately thin objects in condensed matter physics. Here we demonstrate that a single atomic layer of carbon—graphene—turns the polarization by several degrees in modest magnetic fields. Such a strong rotation is due to the resonances originating from the cyclotron effect in the classical regime and the inter-Landau-level transitions in the quantum regime. Combined with the possibility of ambipolar doping, this opens pathways to use graphene in fast tunable ultrathin infrared magneto-optical devices.