Several powerful techniques exist to detect topologically protected surface states of weakly interacting electronic systems. In contrast, surface modes of strongly interacting systems which do not carry electric charge are much harder to detect. We propose resonant light scattering as a means of probing the chargeless surface modes of interacting quantum spin systems, and illustrate its efficacy by a concrete calculation for the three-dimensional hyperhoneycomb Kitaev quantum spin liquid phase. We show that resonant scattering is required to efficiently couple to this model's sublattice polarized surface modes, comprised of emergent Majorana fermions that result from spin fractionalization. We demonstrate that the low-energy response is dominated by the surface contribution for thin films, allowing identification and characterization of emergent topological band structures.
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© 2016 American Physical Society.