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Topological Surface State Annihilation and Creation in SnTe/Crx(BiSb)2–xTe3 Heterostructures



Peng Deng, Alexander Grutter, Yulei Han, Megan E. Holtz, Peng Zhang, Patrick Quarterman, Shuaihang Pan, Shifei Qi, Zhenhua Qiao, Kang L. Wang


Topological surface states are a new class of electronic states with novel properties, including the potential for annihilation between surface states from two topological insulators at a common interface. Here, we report the annihilation and creation of topological surface states in the SnTe/Crx(BiSb)2–xTe3 (CBST) heterostructures as evidenced by magneto-transport, polarized neutron reflectometry, and first-principles calculations. Our results show that topological surface states are induced in the otherwise topologically trivial two-quintuple-layers thick CBST when interfaced with SnTe, as a result of the surface state annihilation at the SnTe/CBST interface. Moreover, we unveiled systematic changes in the transport behaviors of the heterostructures with respect to changing Fermi level and thickness. Our observation of surface state creation and annihilation demonstrates a promising way of designing and engineering topological surface states for dissipationless electronics.
Nano Letters


Topology, Magnetism, Thin Films, Surface, Interface, Condensed Matter Phyisics


Deng, P. , Grutter, A. , Han, Y. , Holtz, M. , Zhang, P. , Quarterman, P. , Pan, S. , Qi, S. , Qiao, Z. and Wang, K. (2022), Topological Surface State Annihilation and Creation in SnTe/Crx(BiSb)2–xTe3 Heterostructures, Nano Letters, [online], (Accessed April 17, 2024)
Created July 19, 2022, Updated March 25, 2024