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Topological Nodal-Line Semimetals in Ferromagnetic Rare-Earth-Metal Monohalides

Nie, S; Weng, HM; Prinz, FB, “Topological Nodal-Line Semimetals in Ferromagnetic Rare-Earth-Metal Monohalides,” PHYSICAL REVIEW B  Volume: 99  Issue: 3  Article Number: 035125  DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevB.99.035125  Published: JAN 14 2019


Topological semimetals, extending the topological classification from insulators to metals, have greatly enriched our understanding of topological states in condensed matter. This is particularly true for topological nodal-line semimetals (TNLSs). In the present paper, we identify layered materials as promising candidates for hosting TNLSs. Based on first-principles calculations and effective model analysis, we propose that layered ferromagnetic rare-earth-metal monohalides LnX (Ln = La, Gd; X = Cl, Br) exhibit long pursued topological phases. Specifically, single-layer LaX and single-layer GdX are ideal two-dimensional (2D) Weyl semimetals and large-gap 2D quantum anomalous Hall insulators (QAHIs), with band gaps up to 61 meV, respectively. In addition, 3D LaX and 3D GdX are TNLSs with a pair of mirror-symmetry protected nodal lines and 3D QAHIs, respectively. The nodal lines in 3D LaX extending through the whole Brillouin zone (BZ) are fairly robust against strong spin-orbit coupling (SOC) and located close to the Fermi level, providing a novel platform toward exploring the exotic properties in nodal-line fermions as well as related device designs.