Two-dimensional lattice model for the surface states of topological insulators
AbstractThe surface states in three-dimensional (3D) topological insulators can be described by a two-dimensional (2D) continuous Dirac Hamiltonian. However, there exists the fermion doubling problem when putting the continuous 2D Dirac equation into a lattice model. In this paper, we introduce a Wilson term with a zero bare mass into the 2D lattice model to overcome the difficulty. By comparing with a 3D Hamiltonian, we show that the modified 2D lattice model can faithfully describe the low-energy electrical and transport properties of surface states of 3D topological insulators. So this 2D lattice model provides a simple and cheap way to numerically simulate the surface states of 3D topological-insulator nanostructures. Based on the 2D lattice model, we also establish the wormhole effect in a topological-insulator nanowire by a magnetic field along the wire and show the surface states being robust against disorder. The proposed 2D lattice model can be extensively applied to study the various properties and effects, such as the transport properties, Hall effect, universal conductance fluctuations, localization effect, etc. So, it paves a way to study the surface states of the 3D topological insulators.