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Higher-order topological superconductors from Weyl semimetals

Ammar Jahin , Apoorv Tiwari , Yuxuan Wang

SciPost Phys. 12, 053 (2022) · published 4 February 2022


We propose that doped Weyl semimetals with {time-reversal and certain crystalline symmetries} are natural candidates to realize higher-order topological superconductors, which exhibit a fully gapped bulk while the surface hosts robust gapless chiral hinge states. We show that in such a doped Weyl semimetal, a featureless finite-range attractive interaction favors a $p+ip$ pairing symmetry. By analyzing its topological properties, we identify such a chiral pairing state as a higher-order topological superconductor, which depending on the existence of a four-fold rotoinversion symmetry, is either intrinsic, {meaning that the corresponding hinge states can only be removed by closing the bulk gap, rather than modifying the surface states}, or extrinsic. We achieve this understanding via various methods recently developed for higher-order topology, including Wannier representability, Wannier spectrum, and defect classification approaches. For the four-fold rotoinversion symmetric case, we provide a complete classification of the higher-order topological superconductors. We show that such second-order topological superconductors exhibit chiral hinge modes that are robust in the absence of interaction effects but can be eliminated at the cost of introducing surface topological order.

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