A model study of present-day Hall-effect circulators

  1. Benedikt Placke,
  2. Stefano Bosco,
  3. and David P. DiVincenzo
Stimulated by the recent implementation of a three-port Hall-effect microwave circulator of Mahoney et al. (MEA), we present model studies of the performance of this device. Our calculations are based on the capacitive-coupling model of Viola and DiVincenzo (VD). Based on conductance data from a typical Hall-bar device obtained from a two-dimensional electron gas (2DEG) in a magnetic field, we numerically solve the coupled field-circuit equations to calculate the expected performance of the circulator, as determined by the S parameters of the device when coupled to 50Ω ports, as a function of frequency and magnetic field. Above magnetic fields of 1.5T, for which a typical 2DEG enters the quantum Hall regime (corresponding to a Landau-level filling fraction ν of 20), the Hall angle θH=tan−1σxy/σxx always remains close to 90∘, and the S parameters are close to the analytic predictions of VD for θH=π/2. As anticipated by VD, MEA find the device to have rather high (kΩ) impedance, and thus to be extremely mismatched to 50Ω, requiring the use of impedance matching. We incorporate the lumped matching circuits of MEA in our modeling and confirm that they can produce excellent circulation, although confined to a very small bandwidth. We predict that this bandwidth is significantly improved by working at lower magnetic field when the Landau index is high, e.g. ν=20, and the impedance mismatch is correspondingly less extreme. Our modeling also confirms the observation of MEA that parasitic port-to-port capacitance can produce very interesting countercirculation effects.

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