Shudan Zhong, Joseph Orenstein, and Joel E. Moore.
Optical gyrotropy from axion electrodynamics in momentum space.
Physical Review Letter, 115:117403, 2015.
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Several emergent phenomena and phases in solids arise from configurations of the electronic Berry phase in momentum space that are similar to gauge field configurations in real space such as magnetic monopoles. We show that the momentum-space analogue of the ``axion electrodynamics'' term \(\textbf E\cdot \textbf B\) plays a fundamental role in a unified theory of Berry-phase contributions to optical gyrotropy in time-reversal invariant materials and the chiral magnetic effect. The Berry-phase mechanism predicts that the rotatory power along the optic axes of a crystal must sum to zero, a constraint beyond that stipulated by point-group symmetry, but observed to high accuracy in classic experimental observations on alpha quartz. Furthermore, the Berry mechanism provides a microscopic basis for the surface conductance at the interface between gyrotropic and nongyrotropic media.