Anisotropic phonon-mediated electronic transport in chiral Weyl semimetals


Christina A. C. Garcia, Dennis M. Nenno, Georgios Varnavides, and Prineha Narang. 12/16/2020. “Anisotropic phonon-mediated electronic transport in chiral Weyl semimetals.” arXiv. Publisher's Version


Discovery and observations of exotic, quantized optical and electrical responses have sparked renewed interest in nonmagnetic chiral crystals. Within this class of materials, six group V transition metal ditetrelides, that is, XY2 (X = V, Nb, Ta and Y = Si, Ge), host composite Weyl nodes on high-symmetry lines, with Kramers-Weyl fermions at time-reversal invariant momenta. In addition, at least two of these materials, NbGe2 and NbSi2, exhibit superconducting transitions at low temperatures. The interplay of strong electron-phonon interaction and complex Fermi surface topology present an opportunity to study both superconductivity and hydrodynamic electron transport in these systems. Towards this broader question, we present an ab initio theoretical study of the electronic transport and electron-phonon scattering in this family of materials, with a particular focus on NbGe2 vs. NbSi2, and the other group V ditetrelides. We shed light on the microscopic origin of NbGe2's large and anisotropic room temperature resistivity and contextualize its strong electron-phonon scattering with a presentation of other relevant scattering lifetimes, both momentum-relaxing and momentum-conserving. Our work explores the intriguing possibility of observing hydrodynamic electron transport in these chiral Weyl semimetals.