The recent discovery of the first Weyl semimetal in TaAs provides the first observation of a Weyl fermion in nature. Such a topological semimetal features a novel type of anomalous surface state, the Fermi arc, which connects a pair of Weyl nodes through the boundary of the crystal. Here, we present theoretical calculations of the quasiparticle interference (QPI) patterns that arise from the surface states including the topological Fermi arcs in the Weyl semimetals TaAs and NbP. Most importantly, we discover that the QPI exhibits termination points that are fingerprints of the Weyl nodes in the interference pattern. Our results, for the first time, propose a universal interference signature of the topological Fermi arcs in TaAs, which is fundamental for scanning tunneling microscope (STM) measurements on this prototypical Weyl semimetal compound. More generally, our work provides critical guideline and methodology for STM studies on new Weyl semimetals. Further, the scattering channels revealed by our QPIs are broadly relevant to surface transport and device applications based on Weyl semimetals.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- General Physics and Astronomy