Skip to main content

Thank you for visiting You are using a browser version with limited support for CSS. To obtain the best experience, we recommend you use a more up to date browser (or turn off compatibility mode in Internet Explorer). In the meantime, to ensure continued support, we are displaying the site without styles and JavaScript.

  • News & Views
  • Published:

Valley nematics

Unfinished bismuth

Anisotropies in conductivity measurements of bismuth point to the spontaneous breaking of intrinsic degeneracies in its electronic structure — and suggest there may be still more to learn from this well-studied material.

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution

Access options

Buy this article

Prices may be subject to local taxes which are calculated during checkout

Figure 1: ABC valleys illustrate one way in which collective effects could induce symmetry breaking.


  1. Zhu, Z., Collaudin, A., Fauque, B., Kang, W. & Behnia, K. Nature Phys. 8, 89–94 (2012).

    Article  ADS  Google Scholar 

  2. Padmanabhan, M., Gokmen, T. & Shayegan, M. Phys. Rev. Lett. 104, 016805 (2010).

    Article  ADS  Google Scholar 

  3. Hasan, M. Z. & Kane, C. L. Rev. Mod. Phys. 82, 3045–3067 (2010).

    Article  ADS  Google Scholar 

  4. Li, L. et al. Science 321, 547–550 (2008).

    Article  ADS  Google Scholar 

  5. Yang, H. et al. Nature Commun. 1, 47 (2010).

    Article  ADS  Google Scholar 

  6. Alicea, J. & Balents, L. Phys. Rev. B 79, 241101 (2009).

    Article  ADS  Google Scholar 

Download references

Author information

Authors and Affiliations


Corresponding author

Correspondence to Vadim Oganesyan.

Rights and permissions

Reprints and permissions

About this article

Cite this article

Parameswaran, S., Oganesyan, V. Unfinished bismuth. Nature Phys 8, 7–8 (2012).

Download citation

  • Published:

  • Issue Date:

  • DOI:

This article is cited by


Quick links

Nature Briefing

Sign up for the Nature Briefing newsletter — what matters in science, free to your inbox daily.

Get the most important science stories of the day, free in your inbox. Sign up for Nature Briefing