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  1. Abstract Magnetic transition metal chalcogenides form an emerging platform for exploring spin-orbit driven Berry phase phenomena owing to the nontrivial interplay between topology and magnetism. Here we show that the anomalous Hall effect in pristine Cr 2 Te 3 thin films manifests a unique temperature-dependent sign reversal at nonzero magnetization, resulting from the momentum-space Berry curvature as established by first-principles simulations. The sign change is strain tunable, enabled by the sharp and well-defined substrate/film interface in the quasi-two-dimensional Cr 2 Te 3 epitaxial films, revealed by scanning transmission electron microscopy and depth-sensitive polarized neutron reflectometry. This Berry phase effect further introduces hump-shaped Hall peaks in pristine Cr 2 Te 3 near the coercive field during the magnetization switching process, owing to the presence of strain-modulated magnetic layers/domains. The versatile interface tunability of Berry curvature in Cr 2 Te 3 thin films offers new opportunities for topological electronics.
    Free, publicly-accessible full text available December 1, 2024
  2. Abstract

    In multilayered magnetic topological insulator structures, magnetization reversal processes can drive topological phase transitions between quantum anomalous Hall, axion insulator, and normal insulator states. Here we report an examination of the critical behavior of two such transitions: the quantum anomalous Hall to normal insulator (QAH-NI), and quantum anomalous Hall to axion insulator (QAH-AXI) transitions. By introducing a new analysis protocol wherein temperature dependent variations in the magnetic coercivity are accounted for, the critical behavior of the QAH-NI and QAH-AXI transitions are evaluated over a wide range of temperature and magnetic field. Despite the uniqueness of these different transitions, quantized longitudinal resistance and Hall conductance are observed at criticality in both cases. Furthermore, critical exponents were extracted for QAH-AXI transitions occurring at magnetization reversals of two different magnetic layers. The observation of consistent critical exponents and resistances in each case, independent of the magnetic layer details, demonstrates critical behaviors in quantum anomalous Hall transitions to be of electronic rather than magnetic origin. Our finding offers a new avenue for studies of phase transition and criticality in QAH insulators.

  3. Free, publicly-accessible full text available December 28, 2023
  4. Abstract

    The inelastic scattering length (Ls) is a length scale of fundamental importance in condensed matters due to the relationship between inelastic scattering and quantum dephasing. In quantum anomalous Hall (QAH) materials, the mesoscopic length scaleLsplays an instrumental role in determining transport properties. Here we examineLsin three regimes of the QAH system with distinct transport behaviors: the QAH, quantum critical, and insulating regimes. Although the resistance changes by five orders of magnitude when tuning between these distinct electronic phases, scaling analyses indicate a universalLsamong all regimes. Finally, mesoscopic scaled devices with sizes on the order ofLswere fabricated, enabling the direct detection of the value ofLsin QAH samples. Our results unveil the fundamental length scale that governs the transport behavior of QAH materials.

  5. Abstract The promise of high-density and low-energy-consumption devices motivates the search for layered structures that stabilize chiral spin textures such as topologically protected skyrmions. At the same time, recently discovered long-range intrinsic magnetic orders in the two-dimensional van der Waals materials provide a new platform for the discovery of novel physics and effects. Here we demonstrate the Dzyaloshinskii–Moriya interaction and Néel-type skyrmions are induced at the WTe 2 /Fe 3 GeTe 2 interface. Transport measurements show the topological Hall effect in this heterostructure for temperatures below 100 K. Furthermore, Lorentz transmission electron microscopy is used to directly image Néel-type skyrmion lattice and the stripe-like magnetic domain structures as well. The interfacial coupling induced Dzyaloshinskii–Moriya interaction is estimated to have a large energy of 1.0 mJ m −2 . This work paves a path towards the skyrmionic devices based on van der Waals layered heterostructures.
  6. Quantum anomalous Hall effect has been observed in magnetically doped topological insulators. However, full quantization, up until now, is limited within the sub–1 K temperature regime, although the material’s magnetic ordering temperature can go beyond 100 K. Here, we study the temperature limiting factors of the effect in Cr-doped (BiSb) 2 Te 3 systems using both transport and magneto-optical methods. By deliberate control of the thin-film thickness and doping profile, we revealed that the low occurring temperature of quantum anomalous Hall effect in current material system is a combined result of weak ferromagnetism and trivial band involvement. Our findings may provide important insights into the search for high-temperature quantum anomalous Hall insulator and other topologically related phenomena.