Directly Observing Edge States of 1D and 2D Topological Insulators
1D and 2D toplogical insulators (TI’s) are characterized by 0D and 1D edge states of exotic spin-charge characteristics. In this talk, we introduce the first direct real space observations of such 0D and 1D edge channels of 1D and 2D TI’s by scanning tunneling microscopy/spectroscopy. The 1D TI utilized is the charge density wave phase of In atomic wires formed on the Si(111) surface, which we discovered in 1999. We clearly identified, topographically and spectroscopically, two different soliton excitations along the wires. The unique features of these solitons, theoretically unraveled as chiral solitons of the Z4 topology, are discussed.
On the other hand, a Bi(111) bilayer was theoretically predicted as a 2D TI in 2005. We have grown Bi(111) bilayer nanoislands with zigzag edges on the surface of Bi2Te2Se. Along those edges, we identified the edge localized electronic state in accordance with first principle calculations. The unexpected electronic structures of the epitaxial Bi(111) bilayer and the Bi/Bi2Te2Se interface are discussed. These two findings pave the avenue towards the microscopic study and the nanoscale utilization of topological solitons and quantum spin Hall states.