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Electrically tunable low-density superconductivity in a monolayer topological insulator

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Science  25 Oct 2018:
eaar4642
DOI: 10.1126/science.aar4642

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Abstract

Turning on superconductivity in a topologically non-trivial insulator may provide a route to search for non-Abelian topological states. However, existing demonstrations of superconductor-insulator switches have involved only topologically trivial systems. Here we report reversible, in situ electrostatic on/off switching of superconductivity in the recently established quantum spin Hall insulator monolayer tungsten ditelluride (WTe2). Fabricated into a van der Waals field effect transistor, the monolayer’s ground state can be continuously gate-tuned from the topological insulating to the superconducting state, with critical temperatures Tc up to ~ 1 Kelvin. Our results establish monolayer WTe2 as a material platform for engineering nanodevices that combine superconducting and topological phases of matter.

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