The giant quantum attenuation of ultrasound in bismuth and other semimetals is noticeably enhanced when certain pair of Landau subbands of electrons and holes participate simultaneously in an attenuation peak. A theoretical analysis is presented which emphasizes importance of dynamical effects of the electron-hole correlation. In the temperature range between 1 K and 4 K covered by most experiments, the correlation effect is found to be weak on the real part of the relevant response function which gives changes in sound velocity. This implies that equilibrium properties of the system are not much influenced by the correlation effect. Nonetheless, the electron-hole correlation is shown to have a drastic consequence on the imaginary part of the response function probed by the ultrasonic attenuation. Proposal for experiment is advanced to discriminate relative importance of this exciton-like correlation from that of republsive correlation between carriers with the same charge.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Condensed Matter Physics