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Nat Commun. 2016 Jan 22;7:10453. doi: 10.1038/ncomms10453.

Nanoscale manipulation of the Mott insulating state coupled to charge order in 1T-TaS2.

Cho D1,2, Cheon S1,2, Kim KS2, Lee SH1,2, Cho YH2,3, Cheong SW3,4, Yeom HW1,2.

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Center for Artificial Low Dimensional Electronic Systems, Institute for Basic Science (IBS), 77 Cheongam-Ro, Pohang 790-784, Korea.
Department of Physics, Pohang University of Science and Technology (POSTECH), Pohang 790-784, Korea.
Laboratory for Pohang Emergent Materials and Max Planck POSTECH Center for Complex Phase Materials, Pohang University of Science and Technology, Pohang 790-784, Korea.
Rutgers Center for Emergent Materials and Department of Physics and Astronomy, Rutgers University, Piscataway, New Jersey 08854, USA.


The controllability over strongly correlated electronic states promises unique electronic devices. A recent example is an optically induced ultrafast switching device based on the transition between the correlated Mott insulating state and a metallic state of a transition metal dichalcogenide 1T-TaS2. However, the electronic switching has been challenging and the nature of the transition has been veiled. Here we demonstrate the nanoscale electronic manipulation of the Mott state of 1T-TaS2. The voltage pulse from a scanning tunnelling microscope switches the insulating phase locally into a metallic phase with irregularly textured domain walls in the charge density wave order inherent to this Mott state. The metallic state is revealed as a correlated phase, which is induced by the moderate reduction of electron correlation due to the charge density wave decoherence.

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