A Weyl Fermion semimetal with surface Fermi arcs in the transition metal monopnictide TaAs class

Shin Ming Huang, Su Yang Xu, Ilya Belopolski, Chi Cheng Lee, Guoqing Chang, Baokai Wang, Nasser Alidoust, Guang Bian, Madhab Neupane, Chenglong Zhang, Shuang Jia, Arun Bansil, Hsin Lin, M. Zahid Hasan

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Abstract

Weyl fermions are massless chiral fermions that play an important role in quantum field theory but have never been observed as fundamental particles. A Weyl semimetal is an unusual crystal that hosts Weyl fermions as quasiparticle excitations and features Fermi arcs on its surface. Such a semimetal not only provides a condensed matter realization of the anomalies in quantum field theories but also demonstrates the topological classification beyond the gapped topological insulators. Here, we identify a topological Weyl semimetal state in the transition metal monopnictide materials class. Our first-principles calculations on TaAs reveal its bulk Weyl fermion cones and surface Fermi arcs. Our results show that in the TaAs-type materials the Weyl semimetal state does not depend on fine-tuning of chemical composition or magnetic order, which opens the door for the experimental realization of Weyl semimetals and Fermi arc surface states in real materials.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number7373
JournalNature communications
Volume6
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 12 2015

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Physics and Astronomy(all)

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    Huang, S. M., Xu, S. Y., Belopolski, I., Lee, C. C., Chang, G., Wang, B., Alidoust, N., Bian, G., Neupane, M., Zhang, C., Jia, S., Bansil, A., Lin, H., & Hasan, M. Z. (2015). A Weyl Fermion semimetal with surface Fermi arcs in the transition metal monopnictide TaAs class. Nature communications, 6, [7373]. https://doi.org/10.1038/ncomms8373