Effect of uniaxial stress on the electronic band structure of NbP

C. Schindler, J. Noky, M. Schmidt, C. Felser, J. Wosnitza, and J. Gooth

Abstract

The Weyl semimetal NbP exhibits a very small Fermi surface consisting of two electron and two hole pockets, whose fourfold degeneracy in k space is tied to the rotational symmetry of the underlying tetragonal crystal lattice. By applying uniaxial stress, the crystal symmetry can be reduced, which successively leads to a degeneracy lifting of the Fermi-surface pockets. This is reflected by a splitting of the Shubnikov–de Haas frequencies when the magnetic field is aligned along the c axis of the tetragonal lattice. In this study, we present the measurement of Shubnikov–de Haas oscillations of single-crystalline NbP samples under uniaxial tension, combined with state-of-the-art calculations of the electronic band structure. Our results show qualitative agreement between calculated and experimentally determined Shubnikov–de Haas frequencies, demonstrating the robustness of the band-structure calculations upon introducing strain. Furthermore, we predict a significant shift of the Weyl points with increasing uniaxial tension, allowing for an effective tuning to the Fermi level at only 0.8% of strain along the a axis.

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