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Phonon modes and Raman signatures of MnBi2nTe3n+1 (n=1,2,3,4) magnetic topological heterostructures

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posted on 2023-06-08, 12:46 authored by Yujin Cho, Jin Ho Kang, Liangbo Liang, Xiangru Kong, Subhajit Ghosh, Fariborz Kargar, Chaowei Hu, Alexander A. Balandin, Alexander A. Puretzky, Ni Ni, Chee Wei Wong
An intrinsic antiferromagnetic topological insulator $\mathrm{MnBi_2Te_4}$ can be realized by intercalating Mn-Te bilayer chain in a topological insulator, $\mathrm{Bi_2Te_3}$. $\mathrm{MnBi_2Te_4}$ provides not only a stable platform to demonstrate exotic physical phenomena, but also easy tunability of the physical properties. For example, inserting more $\mathrm{Bi_2Te_3}$ layers in between two adjacent $\mathrm{MnBi_2Te_4}$ weakens the interlayer magnetic interactions between the $\mathrm{MnBi_2Te_4}$ layers. Here we present the first observations on the inter- and intra-layer phonon modes of $\mathrm{MnBi_{2n}Te_{3n+1}}$ (n=1,2,3,4) using cryogenic low-frequency Raman spectroscopy. We experimentally and theoretically distinguish the Raman vibrational modes using various polarization configurations. The two peaks at 66 cm$^{-1}$ and 112 cm$^{-1}$ show an abnormal perturbation in the Raman linewidths below the magnetic transition temperature due to spin-phonon coupling. In $\mathrm{MnBi_4Te_7}$, the $\mathrm{Bi_2Te_3}$ layers induce Davydov splitting of the A$_{1g}$ mode around 137 cm$^{-1}$ at 5 K. Using the linear chain model, we estimate the out-of-plane interlayer force constant to be $(3.98 \pm 0.14) \times 10^{19}$ N/m$^3$ at 5 K, three times weaker than that of $\mathrm{Bi_2Te_3}$. Our work discovers the dynamics of phonon modes of the $\mathrm{MnBi_2Te_4}$ and the effect of the additional $\mathrm{Bi_2Te_3}$ layers, providing the first-principles guidance to tailor the physical properties of layered heterostructures.



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