Majorana Fermions in Solid State Systems

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A Majorana fermion is a particle that is its own antiparticle. It has been studied in high energy physics for decades, but has not been definitely observed. In condensed matter physics, Majorana fermions appear as low energy fractionalized quasi-particles with non-Abelian statistics and inherent nonlocality. In this talk I will first discuss recent theoretical proposals of realizing Majorana fermions in solid-state systems, including topological insulators and nanowires. I will next propose experimental setups to detect the existence of Majorana fermions and their striking properties.