Spin-Orbit Semimetal SrIrO3 in the Two-Dimensional Limit

D. J. Groenendijk, C. Autieri, J. Girovsky, M. Carmen Martinez-Velarte, N. Manca, G. Mattoni, Ana M R V L Monteiro, N. Gauquelin, J Verbeeck, A. F. Otte, M. Gabay, S. Picozzi, A. D. Caviglia

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Abstract

We investigate the thickness-dependent electronic properties of ultrathin SrIrO3 and discover a transition from a semimetallic to a correlated insulating state below 4 unit cells. Low-temperature magnetoconductance measurements show that spin fluctuations in the semimetallic state are significantly enhanced while approaching the transition point. The electronic properties are further studied by scanning tunneling spectroscopy, showing that 4 unit cell SrIrO3 is on the verge of a gap opening. Our density functional theory calculations reproduce the critical thickness of the transition and show that the opening of a gap in ultrathin SrIrO3 requires antiferromagnetic order.

Original languageEnglish
Article number256403
Number of pages6
JournalPhysical Review Letters
Volume119
Issue number25
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 22 Dec 2017

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