The interaction between light and novel two-dimensional electronic states holds promise to realize new fundamental physics and optical devices. Here, we use pump-probe photoemission spectroscopy to study the optically excited Dirac surface states in the bulk-insulating topological insulator Bi2Te2Se and reveal optical properties that are in sharp contrast to those of bulk-metallic topological insulators. We observe a gigantic optical lifetime exceeding 4μs (1μs=10-6s) for the surface states in Bi2Te2Se, whereas the lifetime in most topological insulators, such as Bi2Se3, has been limited to a few picoseconds (1ps=10-12s). Moreover, we discover a surface photovoltage, a shift of the chemical potential of the Dirac surface states, as large as 100 mV. Our results demonstrate a rare platform to study charge excitation and relaxation in energy and momentum space in a two-dimensional system.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- General Physics and Astronomy