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The Coexistence of Superconductivity and Topological Order in the Bi₂ Se₃ Thin Films

Three-dimensional topological insulators (TIs) are characterized by their nontrivial surface states, in which electrons have their spin locked at a right angle to their momentum under the protection of time-reversal symmetry. The topologically ordered phase in TIs does not break any symmetry. The... Full description

1st Person: Wang, Mei-Xiao
Additional Persons: Liu, Canhua verfasserin; Xu, Jin-Peng verfasserin; Yang, Fang verfasserin; Miao, Lin verfasserin; Yao, Meng-Yu verfasserin; Gao, C. L. verfasserin; Shen, Chenyi verfasserin; Ma, Xucun verfasserin; Chen, X. verfasserin; Xu, Zhu-An verfasserin; Liu, Ying verfasserin; Zhang, Shou-Cheng verfasserin; Qian, Dong verfasserin; Jia, Jin-Feng verfasserin; Xue, Qi-Kun verfasserin
Source: in Science Vol. 336, No. 6077 (2012), p. 52-55
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Type of Publication: Article
Language: English
Published: 2012
Keywords: research-article
Online: Volltext
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Summary: Three-dimensional topological insulators (TIs) are characterized by their nontrivial surface states, in which electrons have their spin locked at a right angle to their momentum under the protection of time-reversal symmetry. The topologically ordered phase in TIs does not break any symmetry. The interplay between topological order and symmetry breaking, such as that observed in superconductivity, can lead to new quantum phenomena and devices. We fabricated a superconducting Tl/superconductor heterostructure by growing dibismuth triselenide (Bi₂ Se₃) thin films on superconductor niobium diselenide substrate. Using scanning tunneling microscopy and angle-resolved photoemission spectroscopy, we observed the superconducting gap at the Bi₂ Se₃ surface in the regime of Bi₂ Se₃ film thickness where topological surface states form. This observation lays the groundwork for experimentally realizing Majorana fermions in condensed matter physics.
Item Description: Copyright: Copyright © 2012 American Association for the Advancement of Science
Physical Description: Online-Ressource
ISSN: 1095-9203

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