Quantum criticality between topological and band insulators in 3+1 dimensions

Pallab Goswami*, Sudip Chakravarty

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

191 Scopus citations


Four-component massive and massless Dirac fermions in the presence of long range Coulomb interaction and chemical potential disorder exhibit striking fermionic quantum criticality. For an odd number of flavors of Dirac fermions, the sign of the Dirac mass distinguishes the topological and the trivial band insulator phases, and the gapless semimetallic phase corresponds to the quantum critical point that separates the two. Up to a critical strength of disorder, the semimetallic phase remains stable, and the universality class of the direct phase transition between two insulating phases is unchanged. Beyond the critical strength of disorder the semimetallic phase undergoes a phase transition into a disorder controlled diffusive metallic phase, and there is no longer a direct phase transition between the two types of insulating phases.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number196803
JournalPhysical review letters
Issue number19
StatePublished - Nov 2 2011

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physics and Astronomy(all)


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