Samarium hexaboride is a trivial surface conductor.

Author(s) Hlawenka, P.; Siemensmeyer, K.; Weschke, E.; Varykhalov, A.; Sánchez-Barriga, J.; Shitsevalova, N.Y.; Dukhnenko, A.V.; Filipov, V.B.; Gabáni, S.; Flachbart, K.; Rader, O.; Rienks, E.D.L.
Journal Nat Commun
Date Published 2018 02 06

SmB is predicted to be the first member of the intersection of topological insulators and Kondo insulators, strongly correlated materials in which the Fermi level lies in the gap of a many-body resonance that forms by hybridization between localized and itinerant states. While robust, surface-only conductivity at low temperature and the observation of surface states at the expected high symmetry points appear to confirm this prediction, we find both surface states at the (100) surface to be topologically trivial. We find the state to appear Rashba split and explain the prominent state by a surface shift of the many-body resonance. We propose that the latter mechanism, which applies to several crystal terminations, can explain the unusual surface conductivity. While additional, as yet unobserved topological surface states cannot be excluded, our results show that a firm connection between the two material classes is still outstanding.

DOI 10.1038/s41467-018-02908-7
ISSN 2041-1723
Citation Hlawenka P, Siemensmeyer K, Weschke E, Varykhalov A, Sánchez-Barriga J, Shitsevalova NY, et al. Samarium hexaboride is a trivial surface conductor. Nat Commun. 2018;9(1):517.

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