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Journal Article

Spin-valley locking in the normal state of a transition-metal dichalcogenide superconductor


Sunko,  V.
Physics of Quantum Materials, Max Planck Institute for Chemical Physics of Solids, Max Planck Society;

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Bawden, L., Cooil, S. P., Mazzola, F., Riley, J. M., Collins-McIntyre, L. J., Sunko, V., et al. (2016). Spin-valley locking in the normal state of a transition-metal dichalcogenide superconductor. Nature Communications, 7: 11711, pp. 1-6. doi:10.1038/ncomms11711.

Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-002A-E0AC-C
Metallic transition-metal dichalcogenides (TMDCs) are benchmark systems for studying and controlling intertwined electronic orders in solids, with superconductivity developing from a charge-density wave state. The interplay between such phases is thought to play a critical role in the unconventional superconductivity of cuprates, Fe-based and heavy-fermion systems, yet even for the more moderately-correlated TMDCs, their nature and origins have proved controversial. Here, we study a prototypical example, 2H-NbSe2, by spin-and angle-resolved photoemission and first-principles theory. We find that the normal state, from which its hallmark collective phases emerge, is characterized by quasiparticles whose spin is locked to their valley pseudospin. This results from a combination of strong spin-orbit interactions and local inversion symmetry breaking, while interlayer coupling further drives a rich three-dimensional momentum dependence of the underlying Fermi-surface spin texture. These findings necessitate a re-investigation of the nature of charge order and superconducting pairing in NbSe2 and related TMDCs.