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Fractional corner charges in spin-orbit coupled crystals


Schindler, Frank; Brzezińska, Marta; Benalcazar, Wladimir A; Iraola, Mikel; Bouhon, Adrien; Tsirkin, Stepan S; Vergniory, Maia G; Neupert, Titus (2019). Fractional corner charges in spin-orbit coupled crystals. Physical Review Research, 1(3):033074.

Abstract

We study two-dimensional spinful insulating phases of matter that are protected by time-reversal and crystalline symmetries. To characterize these phases, we employ the concept of corner charge fractionalization: corners can carry charges that are fractions of even multiples of the electric charge. The charges are quantized and topologically stable as long as all symmetries are preserved. We classify the different corner charge configurations for all point groups, and match them with the corresponding bulk topology. For this we employ symmetry indicators and (nested) Wilson loop invariants. We provide formulas that allow for a convenient calculation of the corner charge from Bloch wave functions and illustrate our results using the example of arsenic and antimony monolayers. Depending on the degree of structural buckling, these materials can exhibit two distinct obstructed atomic limits. We present density functional theory calculations for open flakes to support our findings.

Abstract

We study two-dimensional spinful insulating phases of matter that are protected by time-reversal and crystalline symmetries. To characterize these phases, we employ the concept of corner charge fractionalization: corners can carry charges that are fractions of even multiples of the electric charge. The charges are quantized and topologically stable as long as all symmetries are preserved. We classify the different corner charge configurations for all point groups, and match them with the corresponding bulk topology. For this we employ symmetry indicators and (nested) Wilson loop invariants. We provide formulas that allow for a convenient calculation of the corner charge from Bloch wave functions and illustrate our results using the example of arsenic and antimony monolayers. Depending on the degree of structural buckling, these materials can exhibit two distinct obstructed atomic limits. We present density functional theory calculations for open flakes to support our findings.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:07 Faculty of Science > Physics Institute
Dewey Decimal Classification:530 Physics
Language:English
Date:5 November 2019
Deposited On:09 Jan 2020 11:11
Last Modified:09 Jan 2020 12:12
Publisher:American Physical Society
ISSN:2643-1564
OA Status:Green
Free access at:Publisher DOI. An embargo period may apply.
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1103/physrevresearch.1.033074
Project Information:
  • : FunderSNSF
  • : Grant ID200021_169061
  • : Project TitleAnyons in topological matter: From axiomatic field theory to advanced materials

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