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Creators/Authors contains: "Yan, Jiaqiang"

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  1. Free, publicly-accessible full text available December 28, 2023
  2. Free, publicly-accessible full text available January 1, 2024
  3. In intrinsic magnetic topological insulators, Dirac surface-state gaps are prerequisites for quantum anomalous Hall and axion insulating states. Unambiguous experimental identification of these gaps has proved to be a challenge, however. Here, we use molecular beam epitaxy to grow intrinsic MnBi 2 Te 4 thin films. Using scanning tunneling microscopy/spectroscopy, we directly visualize the Dirac mass gap and its disappearance below and above the magnetic order temperature. We further reveal the interplay of Dirac mass gaps and local magnetic defects. We find that, in high defect regions, the Dirac mass gap collapses. Ab initio and coupled Dirac cone model calculations provide insight into the microscopic origin of the correlation between defect density and spatial gap variations. This work provides unambiguous identification of the Dirac mass gap in MnBi 2 Te 4 and, by revealing the microscopic origin of its gap variation, establishes a material design principle for realizing exotic states in intrinsic magnetic topological insulators. 
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  4. Free, publicly-accessible full text available January 1, 2024
  5. Abstract A Chern insulator is a two-dimensional material that hosts chiral edge states produced by the combination of topology with time reversal symmetry breaking. Such edge states are perfect one-dimensional conductors, which may exist not only on sample edges, but on any boundary between two materials with distinct topological invariants (or Chern numbers). Engineering of such interfaces is highly desirable due to emerging opportunities of using topological edge states for energy-efficient information transmission. Here, we report a chiral edge-current divider based on Chern insulator junctions formed within the layered topological magnet MnBi 2 Te 4 . We find that in a device containing a boundary between regions of different thickness, topological domains with different Chern numbers can coexist. At the domain boundary, a Chern insulator junction forms, where we identify a chiral edge mode along the junction interface. We use this to construct topological circuits in which the chiral edge current can be split, rerouted, or switched off by controlling the Chern numbers of the individual domains. Our results demonstrate MnBi 2 Te 4 as an emerging platform for topological circuits design. 
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    Free, publicly-accessible full text available December 1, 2023
  6. Abstract Electron band topology is combined with intrinsic magnetic orders in MnBi 2 Te 4 , leading to novel quantum phases. Here we investigate collective spin excitations (i.e. magnons) and spin fluctuations in atomically thin MnBi 2 Te 4 flakes using Raman spectroscopy. In a two-septuple layer with non-trivial topology, magnon characteristics evolve as an external magnetic field tunes the ground state through three ordered phases: antiferromagnet, canted antiferromagnet, and ferromagnet. The Raman selection rules are determined by both the crystal symmetry and magnetic order while the magnon energy is determined by different interaction terms. Using non-interacting spin-wave theory, we extract the spin-wave gap at zero magnetic field, an anisotropy energy, and interlayer exchange in bilayers. We also find magnetic fluctuations increase with reduced thickness, which may contribute to a less robust magnetic order in single layers. 
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    Free, publicly-accessible full text available December 1, 2023