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Transport through a disordered topological-metal strip

Junck, Alexandra and Kim, Kun W. and Bergman, Doron L. and Pereg-Barnea, T. and Refael, Gil (2013) Transport through a disordered topological-metal strip. Physical Review B, 87 (23). Art. No. 235114. ISSN 1098-0121. doi:10.1103/PhysRevB.87.235114.

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Features of a topological phase, and edge states in particular, may be obscured by overlapping in energy with a trivial conduction band. The topological nature of such a conductor, however, is revealed in its transport properties, especially in the presence of disorder. In this work, we explore the conductance behavior of such a system with disorder present, and contrast it with the quantized conductance in an ideal two-dimensional topological insulator. Our analysis relies on numerics on a lattice system and analytics on a simple toy model. Interestingly, we find that as disorder is increased from zero, the edge conductivity initially falls from its quantized value; yet, as disorder continues to increase, the conductivity recovers, and saturates at a value slightly below the quantized value of the clean system. We discuss how this effect can be understood from the tendency of the bulk states to localize, while the edge states remain delocalized.

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Additional Information:© 2013 American Physical Society. Received 15 March 2013; published 12 June 2013. We thank F. von Oppen for helpful discussions. We would like to acknowledge financial support through the Helmholtz Virtual Institute “New states of matter and their excitations” (A.J. and G.R.), from DARPA (K.W.K. and G.R.), of the Sherman Fairchild Foundation (D.L.B.), and from NSERC and FQRNT (T.P.B.).
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Helmholtz Virtual InstituteUNSPECIFIED
Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA)UNSPECIFIED
Sherman Fairchild FoundationUNSPECIFIED
Issue or Number:23
Classification Code:PACS: 73.23.-b, 73.20.At
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20130725-082656877
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Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:39573
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:06 Aug 2013 22:36
Last Modified:09 Nov 2021 23:45

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