When time-reversal symmetry is broken, quantum coherent systems with and without spin rotational symmetry exhibit the same universal behavior in their electric transport properties. We show that spin transport discriminates between these two cases. In systems with large charge conductance, spin transport is essentially insensitive to the breaking of time-reversal symmetry. However, in the opposite limit of a single exit channel, spin currents vanish identically in the presence of time-reversal symmetry, but are turned on by breaking it with an orbital magnetic field.
|Physical Review B (Condensed Matter and Materials Physics)
|Published - 15 Jul 2013