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Nat Commun. 2016 Mar 17;7:11006. doi: 10.1038/ncomms11006.

Observation of Weyl nodes and Fermi arcs in tantalum phosphide.

Author information

1
Swiss Light Source, Paul Scherrer Institut, CH-5232 Villigen, Switzerland.
2
Institute of Condensed Matter Physics, École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne, CH-1015 Lausanne, Switzerland.
3
Beijing National Laboratory for Condensed Matter Physics and Institute of Physics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100190, China.
4
Collaborative Innovation Center of Quantum Matter, Beijing 10084, China.
5
Laboratory for Developments and Methods, Paul Scherrer Institut, CH-5232 Villigen, Switzerland.
6
Institute of Theoretical Physics, École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne, CH-1015 Lausanne, Switzerland.
7
National Center for Computational Design and Discovery of Novel Materials MARVEL, Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL), CH-1015 Lausanne, Switzerland.
8
Laboratory for Solid State Physics, ETH Zürich, CH-8093 Zürich, Switzerland.

Abstract

A Weyl semimetal possesses spin-polarized band-crossings, called Weyl nodes, connected by topological surface arcs. The low-energy excitations near the crossing points behave the same as massless Weyl fermions, leading to exotic properties like chiral anomaly. To have the transport properties dominated by Weyl fermions, Weyl nodes need to locate nearly at the chemical potential and enclosed by pairs of individual Fermi surfaces with non-zero Fermi Chern numbers. Combining angle-resolved photoemission spectroscopy and first-principles calculation, here we show that TaP is a Weyl semimetal with only a single type of Weyl fermions, topologically distinguished from TaAs where two types of Weyl fermions contribute to the low-energy physical properties. The simple Weyl fermions in TaP are not only of fundamental interests but also of great potential for future applications. Fermi arcs on the Ta-terminated surface are observed, which appear in a different pattern from that on the As-termination in TaAs and NbAs.

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