Infrared electrodynamics and ferromagnetism in the topological semiconductors Bi2 Te3 and Mn-doped Bi2 Te3

B. C. Chapler, K. W. Post, A. R. Richardella, J. S. Lee, J. Tao, N. Samarth, D. N. Basov

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21 Scopus citations


We report on infrared (IR) optical experiments on Bi2Te3 and Mn-doped Bi2Te3 epitaxial thin films. In the latter film, dilute Mn doping (4.5%) of the topologically nontrivial semiconductor host results in a time-reversal-symmetry- breaking ferromagnetic order below TC=15 K. Our spectroscopic study shows that both materials share the Bi2Te3 crystal structure, as well as classification as bulk degenerate semiconductors. Hence the Fermi energy is located in the Bi2Te3 conduction band in both materials, and furthermore, there is no need to invoke topological surface states to describe the conductivity spectra. We also demonstrate that the Drude oscillator strength gives a simple metric with which to distinguish the possibility of topological surface state origins of the low frequency conductance, and we conclude that in both the pristine and Mn-doped Bi2Te3 samples the electromagnetic response is indeed dominated by the bulk material properties, rather than those of the surface. An encouraging aspect for taking advantage of the interplay between nontrivial topology and magnetism, however, is that the temperature dependence of the Mn-doped Bi2Te3 film suggests bulk charge carriers do not play a significant role in mediating ferromagnetism. Thus, a truly insulating bulk may still be suitable for the formation of a ferromagnetic ground state in this dilute magnetic topological semiconductor.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number235308
JournalPhysical Review B - Condensed Matter and Materials Physics
Issue number23
StatePublished - Jun 11 2014

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics


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