Research Article


2017, 10(2): 491–502


Tunable Rashba spin splitting in quantum-spin Hall-insulator AsF bilayers

Jun Zhao1,3, Wanlin Guo2, and Jing Ma1 (*)

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1 School of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering, Institute of Theoretical and Computational Chemistry, Key Laboratory of Mesoscopic Chemistry of MOE, Nanjing University, Nanjing 210093, China
2 State Key Laboratory of Mechanics and Control of Mechanical Structures, Institute of Nano Science, Nanjing University of Aeronautics and Astronautics, Nanjing 210016, China
3 School of Physics and Optoelectronic Engineering, Yangtze University, Jingzhou 434023, China

Keywords: Rashba spin splitting, topological insulator, bilayer AsF, tensile strain, electric field
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ABSTRACT Rashba spin splitting (RSS) in quantum-spin Hall (QSH) insulators is of special importance for fabricating spintronic devices. By changing the stacking order, a unique bilayered fluorinated arsenene (AsF) system is demonstrated to simultaneously possess RSS and non-trivial topological electronic states. We show by first-principle calculations that tunable RSS can be realized in bilayered AsF. Intrinsic RSS of 25 meV is obtained in the AA-stacked AsF bilayer by considering the spin-orbit coupling effect. The RSS can be tuned in the range of 0 to 50 meV by applying biaxial strains and can be significantly enhanced up to 186 meV in the presence of an external electric field. The AB-stacked AsF bilayer is shown to be a two-dimensional topological insulator with a sizable bulk bandgap of 140 meV (up to 240 meV), which originates from the spin-orbit coupling within the px,y–pz band inversion. Surprisingly, RSS up to 295 meV can be induced in the AB-stacked AsF bilayer by applying an external electric field, while the robust topology property without RSS can be retained under the applied strains. The AsF bilayers with tunable RSS and a nontrivial bandgap with AA- and AB-stacking orders can pave the way for designing spin field-effect transistors and new QSH devices.
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Tunable Rashba spin splitting in quantum-spin Hall-insulator AsF bilayers. Nano Res. 2017, 10(2): 491–502

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