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Topological transitions

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A team of physicists from Tsinghua University, the Institute of Physics-Chinese Academy of Sciences and Penn State University report the observation of a magnetic quantum phase transition as the composition of a complex topological insulator is tuned through a critical point.

The results, reported in this week's issue of Science Magazine, show that this quantum phase transition is driven by the band topology of the system. This interpretation of the experimental results is corroborated by Chaoxing Liu, co-author on the paper, whose theoretical model shows how the magnetic quantum phase transition is driven by the topological phase transition and how the Hall conductance changes its sign across the transition.

Read the article online here.