Disorder enabled band structure engineering of a topological insulator surface

Yishuai Xu, Janet Chiu, Lin Miao, Haowei He, Zhanybek Alpichshev, A. Kapitulnik, Rudro R. Biswas, L. Andrew Wray

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Abstract

    Three-dimensional topological insulators are bulk insulators with Z 2 topological electronic order that gives rise to conducting light-like surface states. These surface electrons are exceptionally resistant to localization by non-magnetic disorder, and have been adopted as the basis for a wide range of proposals to achieve new quasiparticle species and device functionality. Recent studies have yielded a surprise by showing that in spite of resisting localization, topological insulator surface electrons can be reshaped by defects into distinctive resonance states. Here we use numerical simulations and scanning tunnelling microscopy data to show that these resonance states have significance well beyond the localized regime usually associated with impurity bands. At native densities in the model Bi2X3 (X=Bi, Te) compounds, defect resonance states are predicted to generate a new quantum basis for an emergent electron gas that supports diffusive electrical transport.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Article number14081
    JournalNature communications
    Volume8
    DOIs
    StatePublished - Feb 3 2017

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Chemistry(all)
    • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
    • Physics and Astronomy(all)

    Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Disorder enabled band structure engineering of a topological insulator surface'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this

    Xu, Y., Chiu, J., Miao, L., He, H., Alpichshev, Z., Kapitulnik, A., Biswas, R. R., & Wray, L. A. (2017). Disorder enabled band structure engineering of a topological insulator surface. Nature communications, 8, [14081]. https://doi.org/10.1038/ncomms14081