Comparison of Sn-doped and nonstoichiometric vertical-Bridgman-grown crystals of the topological insulator Bi2Te2Se

S. K. Kushwaha, Q. D. Gibson, J. Xiong, I. Pletikosic, A. P. Weber, A. V. Fedorov, N. P. Ong, T. Valla, R. J. Cava

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

33 Scopus citations


A comparative study of the properties of topological insulator Bi 2Te2Se (BTS) crystals grown by the vertical Bridgeman method is described. Two defect mechanisms that create acceptor impurities to compensate for the native n-type carriers are compared: Bi excess, and light Sn doping. Both methods yield low carrier concentrations and an n-p crossover over the length of the grown crystal boules, but lower carrier concentrations and higher resistivities are obtained for the Sn-doped crystals, which reach carrier concentrations as low as 8 × 1014 cm-3. Further, the temperature dependent resistivities for the Sn-doped crystals display strongly activated behavior at high temperatures, with a characteristic energy of half the bulk band gap. The (001) cleaved Sn-doped BTS crystals display high quality Shubnikov de Haas (SdH) quantum oscillations due to the topological surface state electrons. Angle resolved photoelectron spectroscopy (ARPES) characterization shows that the Fermi energy (EF) for the Sn-doped crystals falls cleanly in the surface states with no interference from the bulk bands, which the Dirac point for the surface states lies approximately 60 meV below the top of the bulk valence band maximum, and allows for a determination of the bulk and surface state carrier concentrations as a function of Energy near EF. Electronic structure calculations that compare Bi excess and Sn dopants in BTS demonstrate that Sn acts as a special impurity, with a localized impurity band that acts as a charge buffer occurring inside the bulk band gap. We propose that the special resonant level character of Sn in BTS gives rise to the exceptionally low carrier concentrations and activated resistivities observed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number143708
JournalJournal of Applied Physics
Issue number14
StatePublished - Apr 14 2014

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Physics and Astronomy


Dive into the research topics of 'Comparison of Sn-doped and nonstoichiometric vertical-Bridgman-grown crystals of the topological insulator Bi2Te2Se'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this