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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Field-angle dependence of sound velocity in the Weyl semimetal TaAs

  • Author(s): Laliberté, F
  • Bélanger, F
  • Nair, NL
  • Analytis, JG
  • Boulanger, ME
  • Dion, M
  • Taillefer, L
  • Quilliam, JA
  • et al.

© 2020 American Physical Society. The elastic modulus c44 of a single crystal of the Weyl semimetal TaAs was investigated by measuring relative changes in the sound velocity under application of a magnetic field up to 10 T. Using an ultrasonic pulsed-echo technique, we studied the shear response of the crystal when the angle between the sound wave propagation and the magnetic field is changed. We observe a broken tetragonal symmetry at fields above 6 T, an anisotropy that is likely related to a longitudinal negative magnetoresistance and therefore might provide evidence of the chiral anomaly, one of the main topological signatures of this class of materials. We also observe quantum oscillations in the sound velocity whose frequencies vary with magnetic field orientation. A fan diagram of Landau level indices reveals topological and trivial Berry phases, depending on the field orientation, indicating a sensitivity to different Fermi surface pockets that do or do not enclose Weyl nodes, respectively.

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