Dual quantum spin Hall insulator by density tuned correlations in TaIrTe4

The convergence of topology and correlations represents a highly coveted realm in the pursuit of new quantum states of matter . Introducing electron correlations to a quantum spin Hall (QSH) insulator can lead to the emergence of a fractional topological insulator and other exotic time-reversal-symmetric topological order, not possible in quantum Hall and Chern insulator systems. Here, we report a new dual QSH insulator within the intrinsic monolayer crystal of TaIrTe4 , arising from the interplay of its single-particle topology and density-tuned electron correlations. At charge neutrality, monolayer TaIrTe 4 demonstrates the QSH insulator, manifesting enhanced nonlocal transport and quantized helical edge conductance. After introducing electrons from charge neutrality, TaIrTe 4 shows metallic behaviour in only a small range of charge densities but quickly goes into a new insulating state, entirely unexpected on the basis of the single-particle band structure of TaIrTe4 . This insulating state could arise from a strong electronic instability near the van Hove singularities, probably leading to a charge density wave (CDW). Remarkably, within this correlated insulating gap, we observe a resurgence of the QSH state. The observation of helical edge conduction in a CDW gap could bridge spin physics and charge orders. The discovery of a dual QSH insulator introduces a new method for creating topological flat minibands through CDW superlattices, which offer a promising platform for exploring time-reversal symmetric fractional phases and electromagnetism.

Nature, 628 515 (2024)