Tunneling into clean heavy fermion compounds: Origin of the Fano line shape Academic Article uri icon


  • Recently observed tunneling spectra on clean heavy-fermion compounds show a lattice periodic Fano line shape similar to what is observed in the case of tunneling to a Kondo ion adsorbed at the surface. We show that the translation symmetry of a clean surface in the case of weakly correlated metals leads to a tunneling spectrum which shows a hybridization gap but does not have a Fano line shape. By contrast, in a strongly correlated heavy-fermion metal the heavy quasiparticle states will be broadened by interaction effects. The hybridization gap is completely filled in this way, and an ideal Fano line shape of width $\ensuremath{\sim}2{T}_{K}$ results. In addition, we discuss the possible influence of the tunneling tip on the surface, in (i) leading to additional broadening of the Fano line and (ii) enhancing the hybridization locally, hence adding to the impurity type behavior. The latter effects depend on the tip-surface distance.

publication date

  • January 1, 2010