Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America

About the PNAS Member Editor
Name Balents, Leon
Location University of California, Santa Barbara
Primary Field Physics
Secondary Field Applied Physical Sciences
 Research Interests
Balents is interested in the quantum physics of matter, magnetism, correlated electronic states, and complex materials. He is a theorist known for charting new directions for experiments in quantum materials. He is expert in one dimensional systems, and pioneered the theory of Coulomb interaction effects in quantum wires and carbon nanotubes. With Joel Moore, he discovered three dimensional topological insulators, the first example of bulk materials with topologically protected surface states, and later established the existence of Weyl semimetals, another type of topologically protected electronic phase. He is actively interested in quantum spin liquids, exotic states of matter with macroscopic quantum entanglement of electronic spin, describing their properties and predicting their presence in materials like spin ice pyrochlores. Other current research subjects of his group are topological spintronics, two dimensional Van der Waals materials, and ultra-fast non-equilibrium probes of quantum materials.

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