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An edge-state electron wave packet flows around a defect in a laser-irradiated graphene nanoribbon. When circularly-polarized light impinges on a zig-zag graphene nanoribbon (one dimensional graphene stripe), the material becomes a topological insulator. This means that electrons can perfectly move along its edges, flowing around defects and impurities unaffected, as this images obtained by theoretical simulations shows.
Image courtesy: M. Puviani, Università di Modena e Reggio Emilia, Italy