Conversion between spin and charge currents with topological insulators

S. Zhang, A. Fert

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

82 Scopus citations


Injection of a spin current into the surface or interface states of a topological insulator (TI) induces a charge current (inverse Edelstein effect or IEE) and, inversely, a charge current flowing at the surface or interface states of a TI generates a nonzero spin density (Edelstein Effect or EE) from which a spin current can be ejected into an adjacent layer. The parameters characterizing the efficiency of these conversions between spin and charge currents have been derived in recent experiments. By using a spinor distribution function for a momentum-spin locked TI, we determine a number of spin transport properties of TI-based heterostructure and find that the spin to charge conversion in IEE is controlled by the relaxation of an out-of equilibrium distribution in the TI states while the charge to spin conversion in EE depends on the electron transmission rate at the interface of the TI.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number184423
JournalPhysical Review B
Issue number18
StatePublished - Nov 18 2016

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics


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