A Weyl semimetal is a new state of matter that hosts Weyl fermions as emergent quasiparticles and admits a topological classification that protects Fermi arc surface states on the boundary of a bulk sample. This unusual electronic structure has deep analogies with particle physics and leads to unique topological properties. We report the experimental discovery of a Weyl semimetal, tantalum arsenide (TaAs). Using photoemission spectroscopy, we directly observe Fermi arcs on the surface, as well as the Weyl fermion cones and Weyl nodes in the bulk of TaAs single crystals. We find that Fermi arcs terminate on the Weyl fermion nodes, consistent with their topological character. Our work opens the field for the experimental study of Weyl fermions in physics and materials science.
- Pub Date:
- August 2015
- Condensed Matter - Mesoscale and Nanoscale Physics
- This work (Science 2015) is based on the first theoretical prediction of TaAs family as Weyl Semimetals, see Nature Commun. (November, 2014) our earlier theory work at http://www.nature.com/ncomms/2015/150612/ncomms8373/full/ncomms8373.html (November, 2014), arXiv:1501.00755