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In-Plane Anisotropy in the Layered Topological Insulator Ta2Ni3Te5 Investigated via TEM and Polarized Raman Spectroscopy

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posted on 2024-02-02, 22:50 authored by Kamal Harrison, Dylan A. Jeff, Jonathan M. DeStefano, Olivia Peek, Akihiro Kushima, Jiun-Haw Chu, Humberto R. Gutiérrez, Saiful I. Khondaker
Layered Ta2M3Te5 (M = Pd, Ni) has emerged as a platform to study 2D topological insulators, which have exotic properties such as spin-momentum locking and the presence of Dirac fermions for use in conventional and quantum-based electronics. In particular, Ta2Ni3Te5 has been shown to have superconductivity under pressure and is predicted to have second-order topology. Despite being an interesting material with fascinating physics, the detailed crystalline and phononic properties of this material are still unknown. In this study, we use transmission electron microscopy (TEM) and polarized Raman spectroscopy (PRS) to reveal the anisotropic properties of exfoliated few-layer Ta2Ni3Te5. An electron diffraction and TEM study reveals structural anisotropy in the material, with a preferential crystal orientation along the [010] direction. Through Raman spectroscopy, we discovered 15 vibrational modes, 3 of which are ultralow-frequency modes, which show anisotropic response with sample orientation varying with the polarization of the incident beam. Using angle-resolved PRS, we assigned the vibrational symmetries of 11 modes to Ag and two modes to B3g. We also found that linear dichroism plays a role in understanding the Raman signature of this material, which requires the use of complex elements in the Raman tensors. The anisotropy of the Raman scattering also depends on the excitation energies. Our observations reveal the anisotropic nature of Ta2Ni3Te5, establish a quick and nondestructive Raman fingerprint for determining sample orientation, and represent a significant advance in the fundamental understanding of the two-dimensional topological insulator (2DTI) Ta2Ni3Te5 material.

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