Investigating Thermodynamic Properties of Honeycomb Systems FePS3 and RuPS3

Summer 2017

Caolan John : Physics

Mentor: James Analytis

Quantum mechanics shows us that the electronic energy levels of isolated atoms are discrete. Upon the formation of a solid with many atoms, these energy levels merge to become quasi-continuous functions of the electron’s momentum known as energy bands. In CeSb, the structure of these energy bands protects the stability of a semimetal state that would, in the absence of topological considerations, be destroyed in favor of an insulating state. In addition, CeSb possesses local magnetic moments that strongly interact with the electrons of the solid. I will be investigating how the magnetic order of the system interacts with its unique topology and how these interactions manifest themselves as bulk electrical, magnetic, and thermal properties of CeSb. The high mobility and low concentration of the carriers make this material an attractive candidate for new semiconductor devices.

I'd like to thank the Rose Hills Foundation for a truly incredible summer. Not only was I able to accomplish many of my research goals, but I was able to reach a far deeper level of understanding in my field, enabling me to feel like a real part of the research community. Without a doubt, I'd like to go to graduate school so that I can continue doing research at such a high level. After a tough start academically in college, this program has restored my confidence, and for that, I thank you.