TY - JOUR

T1 - Emergence of non-centrosymmetric topological insulating phase in BiTeI under pressure

AU - Bahramy, M.S.

AU - Yang, B.-J.

AU - Arita, R.

AU - Nagaosa, N.

PY - 2012

Y1 - 2012

N2 - The spin–orbit interaction affects the electronic structure of solids in various ways. Topological insulators are one example in which the spin–orbit interaction leads the bulk bands to have a non-trivial topology, observable as gapless surface or edge states. Another example is the Rashba effect, which lifts the electron-spin degeneracy as a consequence of the spin–orbit interaction under broken inversion symmetry. It is of particular importance to know how these two effects, that is, the non-trivial topology of electronic states and the Rashba spin splitting, interplay with each other. Here we show through sophisticated first-principles calculations that BiTeI, a giant bulk Rashba semiconductor, turns into a topological insulator under a reasonable pressure. This material is shown to exhibit several unique features, such as a highly pressure-tunable giant Rashba spin splitting, an unusual pressure-induced quantum phase transition, and more importantly, the formation of strikingly different Dirac surface states at opposite sides of the material.

AB - The spin–orbit interaction affects the electronic structure of solids in various ways. Topological insulators are one example in which the spin–orbit interaction leads the bulk bands to have a non-trivial topology, observable as gapless surface or edge states. Another example is the Rashba effect, which lifts the electron-spin degeneracy as a consequence of the spin–orbit interaction under broken inversion symmetry. It is of particular importance to know how these two effects, that is, the non-trivial topology of electronic states and the Rashba spin splitting, interplay with each other. Here we show through sophisticated first-principles calculations that BiTeI, a giant bulk Rashba semiconductor, turns into a topological insulator under a reasonable pressure. This material is shown to exhibit several unique features, such as a highly pressure-tunable giant Rashba spin splitting, an unusual pressure-induced quantum phase transition, and more importantly, the formation of strikingly different Dirac surface states at opposite sides of the material.

U2 - 10.1038/ncomms1679

DO - 10.1038/ncomms1679

M3 - Article

SN - 2041-1723

VL - 3

JO - Nature Communications

JF - Nature Communications

IS - 1

ER -