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Spin-Orbit Coupling and Novel Electronic States at the Interfaces of Heavy Fermion Materials

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Technical Report,20 Jun 2013,19 Mar 2014

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William Marsh Rice University Houston United States

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This report summarizes the progress made under the STIR grant. We completed the exploratory phase of a newly developed idea, which is to study novel electronic phases at the interfaces of heavy fermion heterostructures. The key physics is that the strong and tunable spin-orbit coupling SOC may induce new electronic phases that are difficult to realize in bulk materials. With the support of this STIR grant, we have a completed a theoretical study, which illustrates that the tuning of SOC gives rise to transitions between quantum phases in a Kondoinsulator system and, equally important, b motivated experimental ists to embark on the fabrication of Kondo insulator heterostructures and the exploration of quantum phase transitions induced by the interplay among a tunable SOC, Kondo coupling, and magnetism associated with RKKY interactions. As such, our work has moved forward with exploring a promising new parameter regime in the correlated-electron global phase diagram of heavy fermion materials and, in addition, paving the way for interactions between the heavy fermion and correlated oxide heterostructure communities.

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