Direct observation of spin-polarized bulk bands in an inversion-symmetric semiconductor

Jonathon Mark Riley, F. Mazzola, M. Dendzik, M. Michiardi, T. Takayama, Lewis Bawden, C. Granerød, M. Leandersson, T. Balasubramanian, M. Hoesch, T. K. Kim, H. Takagi, W. Meevasana, Ph. Hofmann, M. S. Bahramy, J. W. Wells, Phil King

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Methods to generate spin-polarized electronic states in non-magnetic solids are strongly desired to enable all-electrical manipulation of electron spins for new quantum devices1. This is generally accepted to require breaking global structural inversion symmetry1, 2, 3, 4, 5. In contrast, here we report the observation from spin- and angle-resolved photoemission spectroscopy of spin-polarized bulk states in the centrosymmetric transition-metal dichalcogenide WSe2. Mediated by a lack of inversion symmetry in constituent structural units of the bulk crystal where the electronic states are localized6, we show how spin splittings up to ∼0.5 eV result, with a spin texture that is strongly modulated in both real and momentum space. Through this, our study provides direct experimental evidence for a putative locking of the spin with the layer and valley pseudospins in transition-metal dichalcogenides7, 8, of key importance for using these compounds in proposed valleytronic devices.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)835–839
Number of pages5
JournalNature Physics
Issue number11
Early online date5 Oct 2014
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2014


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