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Editorial: Eight Journals Introduce Letters

March 9, 2021

At the beginning of 2021, eight Physical Review journals began publishing Letters which are intended for the accelerated publication of important new results targeted to the specific readership of each journal.

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Direct evidence of ferromagnetism in MnSb2Te4

The compound MnSb2Te4 is a close relative of the intrinsic antiferromagnetic topological insulator MnBi2Te4. Density functional theory predicts that a Weyl semimetal phase exists in ferromagnetic MnBi2Te4. Here, the authors fill in gaps in the magnetic imaging of MnSb2Te4 and confirm long-range ferromagnetic order in single crystals of ferromagnetic MnSb2Te4 using cryogenic magnetic force microscopy. The direct evidence of ferromagnetism in MnSb2Te4 paves the way for realizing the ferromagnetic Weyl semimetal phase in the family of Mn(Bi, Sb)2Te4.

Wenbo Ge et al.
Phys. Rev. B 103, 134403 (2021)

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Inelastic neutron scattering determination of the spin Hamiltonian for BaCdVO(PO4)2

No material perfectly realizes the frustrated quantum ferro-antiferromagnetic Heisenberg model on a square lattice, but BaCdVO(PO4)2 comes close. Here, the authors perform neutron spectroscopy measurements in high magnetic fields to determine an appropriate spin Hamiltonian for this system. They overcome numerous technical difficulties, such as the required 114Cd enrichment for neutron experiments and the complex sample mosaic. The results will help understand the previously discovered presaturation phase in this compound. Could it be the elusive spin nematic state?

V. K. Bhartiya et al.
Phys. Rev. B 103, 144402 (2021)

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Thermopower across the phase diagram of the cuprate La1.6xNd0.4SrxCuO4: Signatures of the pseudogap and charge density wave phases

Cuprate high-temperature superconductors universally exhibit a phase of charge order and a mysterious pseudogap phase. Using thermopower measurements, the authors explore here how the cuprate La1.6xNd0.4SrxCuO4 (Nd-LSCO) evolves across these phases. They find that the thermopower displays a large increase below the pseudogap critical doping point p* and becomes negative in the charge order phase below that critical doping point pCDW. This evolution hints at profound changes in the electronic structure at p* and pCDW. They observe that these two critical dopings are well separated, implying that the two phases are clearly distinct.

C. Collignon et al.
Phys. Rev. B 103, 155102 (2021)

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Topological and symmetry-enriched random quantum critical points

Topological phases represent a pillar of modern condensed matter physics. While gapped topological systems have been studied extensively, gapless topological materials represent an exciting, largely unexplored area. Here, the authors show that symmetry can enrich random quantum critical points and phases. They uncover a class of gapless topological phases, protected by symmetry and robust to strong randomness. Some of these phases can be realized in nonequilibrium states stabilized by many-body localization. They also appear naturally in periodically driven (Floquet) systems.

Carlos M. Duque et al.
Phys. Rev. B 103, L100207 (2021)

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Topological anomalous skin effect in Weyl superconductors

Superconductors absorb light despite having infinite dc conductivity. In a topologically trivial superconductor, such absorption is typically facilitated by disorder, giving rise to the anomalous skin effect. Here, the authors demonstrate that topology can mediate a new mechanism of optical absorption, dubbed the “topological anomalous skin effect”. In clean topological superconductors, the presence of surface states allow surface-to-bulk optical transitions. Specifically, for Weyl superconductors, the authors predict a characteristic absorption peak, which also survives in the presence of weak disorder.

Tsz Chun Wu, Hridis K. Pal, and Matthew S. Foster
Phys. Rev. B 103, 104517 (2021)

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Dispersion relation of Landau elementary excitations and thermodynamic properties of superfluid He4

Superfluid 4He, a strongly correlated Bose-Einstein condensed many-body system, displays sharp phonon-roton quantized excitations. Here, the authors report a complete determination of the dispersion relation of these excitations, using the most advanced inelastic neutron scattering methods as well as detailed dynamic many-body theory calculations. From the measured dispersion, the authors obtain, analytically as well as numerically, accurate tables of the thermodynamic properties. These highly precise results provide indispensable reference for a large variety of fundamental experimental and theoretical studies.

H. Godfrin et al.
Phys. Rev. B 103, 104516 (2021)


March 29, 2021

Researchers have measured superfluid helium’s full dispersion spectrum, explaining discrepancies in previous studies and constraining theories of superfluidity.

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H. Godfrin et al.
Phys. Rev. B 103, 104516 (2021)

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Statistical mechanics of quantum error correcting codes

Random quantum dynamics generates quantum error correcting codes that are robust against observers and errors. Here, the authors describe a simple physical picture of such codes, mapping characteristic code properties to the statistical mechanics of fluctuating “entanglement domain walls”. The error correcting criterion is understood as a decoupling condition of domain walls, which leads to a universal scaling law of the “code distance”.

Yaodong Li and Matthew P. A. Fisher
Phys. Rev. B 103, 104306 (2021)

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Noncollinear ferromagnetic Weyl semimetal with anisotropic anomalous Hall effect

The connection of novel electromagnetic responses to Weyl nodes in topological semimetals is intriguing but difficult to establish in experiments. Here, the authors discover CeAlSi to be a new ferromagnetic Weyl semimetal by combining first-principles calculations with various experimental techniques. These reveal a new loop Hall effect that is induced purely by the proximity of the material’s Fermi level to its Weyl nodes. The loop Hall effect can potentially result from topological Fermi arcs located on magnetic domain walls.

Hung-Yu Yang et al.
Phys. Rev. B 103, 115143 (2021)

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Time-dependent self-consistent harmonic approximation: Anharmonic nuclear quantum dynamics and time correlation functions

Simulating nuclear quantum dynamics in strongly anharmonic materials is an open challenge where state-of-the-art techniques fail. This is relevant in ferroelectrics, charge density waves, and crystals encapsulating light atoms, such as superconductive high-pressure hydrides. Here, the authors develop a theory to compute dynamical properties and predict experimental Raman and IR spectroscopy, neutron scattering, and x-ray scattering of any material, accounting for the nuclear quantum and anharmonic dynamics.The method is efficient and can be applied to systems with hundreds of atoms even when treating electrons ab initio within density functional theory.

Lorenzo Monacelli and Francesco Mauri
Phys. Rev. B 103, 104305 (2021)

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Emergent fracton dynamics in a nonplanar dimer model

Lattice gauge theories describe strongly interacting quantum many-body systems whose nonequilibrium properties in more than one dimension provide a challenge to current numerical methods. Here, the authors study a dimer model as an example of a U(1) gauge theory whose universal transport properties can be extracted using classically simulable methods. This is achieved by exploiting a surprising connection to topological solitons, enabling a venue of analysis that demonstrates how gauge constraints induce fractonic mobility, slow subdiffusive transport, and nonergodic dynamics.

Johannes Feldmeier, Frank Pollmann, and Michael Knap
Phys. Rev. B 103, 094303 (2021)


Promoting Inclusive and Respectful Communications

November 18, 2020

APS Editor in Chief, Michael Thoennessen, discusses a new opportunity for communicating authors to include their pronouns together with their contact email in order to promote a more respectful, inclusive, and equitable environment.

Physical review 50 prb

Physical Review B 50th Anniversary Milestones

The year 2020 marks PRB’s 50th anniversary. On this occasion, the editors launch a collection of select papers. These Milestone studies represent lasting contributions to physics by way of reporting significant discoveries, initiating new areas of research, or substantially enhancing the conceptual tools for making progress in the burgeoning field of condensed matter physics.


Current Issues

Vol. 103, Iss. 13-16 — April 2021

View Current Issues


APS Announces Outstanding Referees for 2021
February 24, 2021

APS has selected 151 Outstanding Referees for 2021 who have demonstrated exceptional work in the assessment of manuscripts published in the Physical Review journals. A full list of the Outstanding Referees is available online.

In memoriam: Jack Sandweiss, 1930-2020
January 6, 2021

It is with great sadness that we mourn the passing in November 2020 of our former colleague, Jack Sandweiss, who was Editor of PRL for a quarter of a century (1987-2013).

Rapid Communications papers will now be Letters
November 23, 2020

Starting January 1, 2021, the Rapid Communications article type will be renamed to Letters. With this change, all eight Physical Review journals that had previously classified articles of the type “Rapid Communications” will adopt the practice of Physical Review Applied and now publish such articles as Letters. Learn more

More Announcements

Trending in PRB

Noncollinear ferromagnetic Weyl semimetal with anisotropic anomalous Hall effect
Hung-Yu Yang et al.
Phys. Rev. B 103, 115143 (2021)

Coexistence of Bloch and Néel walls in a collinear antiferromagnet
M.S. Wornle et al.
Phys. Rev. B 103, 094426 (2021)

Statistical mechanics of quantum error correcting codes
Yaodong Li and Matthew P.A. Fisher
Phys. Rev. B 103, 104306 (2021)

Realization of a tunable surface Dirac gap in Sb-doped MnBi2Te4
Xiao-Ming Ma et al.
Phys. Rev. B 103, L121112 (2021)

Tunable topological states in layered magnetic materials of MnSb2Te4, MnBi2Se4, and MnSb2Se4
Huisheng Zhang, Wenjia Yang, Yingying Wang, and Xiaohong Xu
Phys. Rev. B 103, 094433 (2021)

Network model for higher-order topological phases
Hui Liu et al.
Phys. Rev. B 103, 115428 (2021)

Peierls transition, ferroelectricity, and spin-singlet formation in monolayer VOI2
Yang Zhang et al.
Phys. Rev. B 103, L121114 (2021)

Time-dependent self-consistent harmonic approximation: Anharmonic nuclear quantum dynamics and time correlation functions
Lorenzo Monacelli and Francesco Mauri
Phys. Rev. B 103, 104305 (2021)

Quantum spin Hall effect in Ta2M3Te5 (M= Pd, Ni)
Zhaopeng Guo et al.
Phys. Rev. B 103, 115145 (2021)

Flat bands, strains, and charge distribution in twisted bilayer h-BN
Niels R. Walet and Francisco Guinea
Phys. Rev. B 103, 125427 (2021)

Band structure engineering of van der Waals heterostructures using ferroelectric clamped sandwich structures
Hao Tian et al.
Phys. Rev. B 103, 125426 (2021)

Field-induced successive phase transitions in the J1-J2 buckled honeycomb antiferromagnet Cs3Fe2Cl9
Y. Ishii et al.
Phys. Rev. B 103, 104433 (2021)

Ferromagnetism in two-dimensional Fe3GeTe2; Tunability by hydrostatic pressure
Shilei Ding et al.
Phys. Rev. B 103, 094429 (2021)

Topological properties of noncentrosymmetric superconductors TIr2B2 (T=Nb, Ta)
Yan Gao et al.
Phys. Rev. B 103, 125154 (2021)

Experimental demonstration of voltage-gated spin-orbit torque switching in an antiferromagnet/ferromagnet structure
Weixiang Li et al.
Phys. Rev. B 103, 094436 (2021)

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