Separation of electron and hole dynamics in the semimetal LaSb

F. Han, J. Xu, A. S. Botana, Z. L. Xiao, Y. L. Wang, W. G. Yang, D. Y. Chung, M. G. Kanatzidis, M. R. Norman, G. W. Crabtree, W. K. Kwok

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

37 Scopus citations


We report investigations on the magnetotransport in LaSb, which exhibits extremely large magnetoresistance (XMR). Foremost, we demonstrate that the resistivity plateau can be explained without invoking topological protection. We then determine the Fermi surface from Shubnikov-de Haas (SdH) quantum oscillation measurements and find good agreement with the bulk Fermi pockets derived from first-principles calculations. Using a semiclassical theory and the experimentally determined Fermi pocket anisotropies, we quantitatively describe the orbital magnetoresistance, including its angle dependence. We show that the origin of XMR in LaSb lies in its high mobility with diminishing Hall effect, where the high mobility leads to a strong magnetic-field dependence of the longitudinal magnetoconductance. Unlike a one-band material, when a system has two or more bands (Fermi pockets) with electron and hole carriers, the added conductance arising from the Hall effect is reduced, hence revealing the latent XMR enabled by the longitudinal magnetoconductance. With diminishing Hall effect, the magnetoresistivity is simply the inverse of the longitudinal magnetoconductivity, enabling the differentiation of the electron and hole contributions to the XMR, which varies with the strength and orientation of the magnetic field. This work demonstrates a convenient way to separate the dynamics of the charge carriers and to uncover the origin of XMR in multiband materials with anisotropic Fermi surfaces. Our approach can be readily applied to other XMR materials.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number125112
JournalPhysical Review B
Issue number12
StatePublished - Sep 7 2017
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics


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