Robust topological surface state in Kondo insulator SmB6 thin films


Journal Article

© 2014 AIP Publishing LLC. Fabrication of smooth thin films of topological insulators with true insulating bulk are extremely important for utilizing their novel properties in quantum and spintronic devices. Here, we report the growth of crystalline thin films of SmB6, a topological Kondo insulator with true insulating bulk, by co-sputtering both SmB6 and B targets. X-ray diffraction, Raman spectroscopy, and transmission electron microscopy indicate films that are polycrystalline with a (001) preferred orientation. When cooling down, resistivity ρ shows an increase around 50K and saturation below 10K, consistent with the opening of the hybridization gap and surface dominated transport, respectively. The ratio ρ2K/ρ300K is only about two, much smaller than that of bulk, which indicates a much larger surface-to-bulk ratio. Point contact spectroscopy using a superconductor tip on SmB6 films shows both a Kondo Fano resonance and Andeev reflection, indicating an insulating Kondo lattice with metallic surface states.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Yong, J; Jiang, Y; Usanmaz, D; Curtarolo, S; Zhang, X; Li, L; Pan, X; Shin, J; Takeuchi, I; Greene, RL

Published Date

  • December 1, 2014

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 105 / 22

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0003-6951

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1063/1.4902865

Citation Source

  • Scopus