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Journal Article

The distribution of work performed on a NIS junction


Kirchner,  Stefan
Stefan Kirchner, cross-PKS/CPfS theory group, Max Planck Institute for Chemical Physics of Solids, Max Planck Society;

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Santos, J. E., Ribeiro, P., & Kirchner, S. (2016). The distribution of work performed on a NIS junction. New Journal of Physics, 18: 023007, pp. 1-20. doi:10.1088/1367-2630/18/2/023007.

Cite as: https://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-002A-3995-4
We propose an experimental setup to measure the work performed in a normal-metal/insulator/superconducting (NIS) junction, subjected to a voltage change and in contact with a thermal bath. We compute the performed work and argue that the associated heat release can be measured experimentally. Our results are based on an equivalence between the dynamics of the NIS junction and that of an assembly of two-level systems subjected to a circularly polarised field, for which we can determine the work-characteristic function exactly. The average work dissipated by the NIS junction, as well as its fluctuations, are determined. From the work characteristic function, we also compute the work probability-distribution and show that it does not have a Gaussian character. Our results allow for a direct experimental test of the Crooks-Tasaki fluctuation relation.