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Journal Article

Dirac surface states in intrinsic magnetic topological insulators EuSn2As2 and MnBi2nTe3n+1


Xu,  Yuang-Feng
Max Planck Institute of Microstructure Physics, Max Planck Society;

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Li, H., Gao, S.-Y., Duan, S.-F., Xu, Y.-F., Zhu, K.-J., Tian, S.-J., et al. (2019). Dirac surface states in intrinsic magnetic topological insulators EuSn2As2 and MnBi2nTe3n+1. Physical Review X, 9: 041039. doi:10.1103/PhysRevX.9.041039.

Cite as: https://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0009-0C94-3
In magnetic topological insulators (TIs), the interplay between magnetic order and nontrivial topology can induce fascinating topological quantum phenomena, such as the quantum anomalous Hall effect, chiral Majorana fermions, and axion electrodynamics. Recently, a great deal of attention has been focused on the intrinsic magnetic TIs, where disorder effects can be eliminated to a large extent, which is expected to facilitate the emergence of topological quantum phenomena. Despite intensive efforts, experimental evidence of the topological surface states (SSs) remains elusive. Here, by combining first-principles calculations and angle-resolved photoemission spectroscopy (ARPES) experiments, we reveal that EuSn2As2 is an antiferromagnetic TI with the observation of Dirac SSs consistent with our prediction. We also observe nearly gapless Dirac SSs in antiferromagnetic TIs MnBi2nTe3n+1 (n=1 and 2), which are absent in previous ARPES results. These results provide clear evidence for nontrivial topology of these intrinsic magnetic TIs. Furthermore, we find that the topological SSs show no observable changes across the magnetic transition within the experimental resolution, indicating that the magnetic order has a quite small effect on the topological SSs, which can be attributed to weak hybridization between the localized magnetic moments, from either 4f or 3d orbitals, and the topological electronic states. This finding provides insights for further research that the correlations between magnetism and topological states need to be strengthened to induce larger gaps in the topological SSs, which will facilitate the realization of topological quantum phenomena at higher temperatures.