Publications and Research

Document Type


Publication Date



Topological insulators are potentially transformative quantum solids with metallic surface states which have Dirac band structure and are immune to disorder. Ubiquitous charged bulk defects, however, pull the Fermi energy into the bulk bands, denying access to surface charge transport. Here we demonstrate that irradiation with swift (B2.5MeV energy) electron beams allows to compensate these defects, bring the Fermi level back into the bulk gap and reach the charge neutrality point (CNP). Controlling the beam fluence, we tune bulk conductivity from p- (hole-like) to n-type (electron-like), crossing the Dirac point and back, while preserving the Dirac energy dispersion. The CNP conductance has a two-dimensional character on the order of ten conductance quanta and reveals, both in Bi2Te3 and Bi2Se3, the presence of only two quantum channels corresponding to two topological surfaces. The intrinsic quantum transport of the topological states is accessible disregarding the bulk size.


This article was originally published in Nature Communications, available at DOI: 10.1038/ncomms10957.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

Included in

Physics Commons



To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.