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Emergence of quasiparticle Bloch states in artificial crystals crafted atom-by-atom

Jan Girovsky, Jose L. Lado, Floris E. Kalff, Eleonora Fahrenfort, Lucas J. J. M. Peters, Joaquín Fernández-Rossier, Alexander F. Otte

SciPost Phys. 2, 020 (2017) · published 14 June 2017


The interaction of electrons with a periodic potential of atoms in crystalline solids gives rise to band structure. The band structure of existing materials can be measured by photoemission spectroscopy and accurately understood in terms of the tight-binding model, however not many experimental approaches exist that allow to tailor artificial crystal lattices using a bottom-up approach. The ability to engineer and study atomically crafted designer materials by scanning tunnelling microscopy and spectroscopy (STM/STS) helps to understand the emergence of material properties. Here, we use atom manipulation of individual vacancies in a chlorine monolayer on Cu(100) to construct one- and two-dimensional structures of various densities and sizes. Local STS measurements reveal the emergence of quasiparticle bands, evidenced by standing Bloch waves, with tuneable dispersion. The experimental data are understood in terms of a tight-binding model combined with an additional broadening term that allows an estimation of the coupling to the underlying substrate.

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Artificial crystals Band structure Bloch states Photoemission spectroscopy Quasiparticles Scanning tunnelling microscopy (STM) Scanning tunnelling spectroscopy (STS) Tight-binding models

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