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1.
J Phys Chem Lett ; 12(32): 7832-7839, 2021 Aug 19.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-34379422

RESUMEN

Thermoelectric materials which enable heat-to-electricity conversion are fundamentally important for heat management in semiconductor devices. Achieving high thermoelectric performance requires blocking the thermal transport and maintaining the high electronic transport, but it is a challenge to satisfy both criteria simultaneously. We propose that tuning the interlayer distance can effectively modulate the electrical and thermal conductivities. We find group IV-VI and V semiconductors with a moderate interlayer distance can exhibit high thermoelectric performance. Taking SnSe as an example, we reveal that in the out-of-plane direction the delocalized pz orbitals combined with the relatively small interlayer distance lead to overlapping of the antibonding state wave functions, which is beneficial for high electronic transport. However, because of the breakdown of the chemical bond, the out-of-plane thermal conductivity is small. This study provides a strategy to enhance electrical conductivity without increasing thermal conductivity and thus sheds light on the design of thermoelectric devices.

2.
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A ; 116(39): 19258-19263, 2019 Sep 24.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-31501328

RESUMEN

Ultrafast control of magnetic order by light provides a promising realization for spintronic devices beyond Moore's Law and has stimulated intense research interest in recent years. Yet, despite 2 decades of debates, the key question of how the spin angular momentum flows on the femtosecond timescale remains open. The lack of direct first-principle methods and pictures for such process exacerbates the issue. Here, we unravel the laser-induced demagnetization mechanism of ferromagnetic semiconductor GaMnAs, using an efficient time-dependent density functional theory approach that enables the direct real-time snapshot of the demagnetization process. Our results show a clear spin-transfer trajectory from the localized Mn-d electrons to itinerant carriers within 20 fs, illustrating the dominant role of [Formula: see text] interaction. We find that the total spin of localized electrons and itinerant carriers is not conserved in the presence of spin-orbit coupling (SOC). Immediately after laser excitation, a growing percentage of spin-angular momentum is quickly transferred to the electron orbital via SOC in about 1 ps, then slowly to the lattice via electron-phonon coupling in a few picoseconds, responsible for the 2-stage process observed experimentally. The spin-relaxation time via SOC is about 300 fs for itinerant carriers and about 700 fs for Mn-d electrons. These results provide a quantum-mechanical microscopic picture for the long-standing questions regarding the channels and timescales of spin transfer, as well as the roles of different interactions underlying the GaMnAs demagnetization process.

3.
ACS Appl Mater Interfaces ; 11(28): 24837-24849, 2019 Jul 17.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-30995003

RESUMEN

Transparent conductive materials (TCMs) has always been playing a significant role in electronic and photovoltaic area, due to its prominent optical and electronic properties. To render those transparent materials highly conductive, efficient n- and p- type doping is critically needed to obtain high concentration of free electron and hole carriers. Despite extensive research over the past five decades, high-quality p-type doping of wide-band-gap transparent materials remains a challenge. Here, we summarize four proposed design principles to enhance the p-type conductivity of these wide band gap materials, including (i) reducing the formation energy of the acceptors to enhance the dopant concentration; (ii) lowering the ionization energy and, hence, increasing the ionization of the acceptors to increase the concentration of the free holes; (iii) increasing the VBM of the host material to approaching the pinned Fermi level; and (iv) suppressing the compensating donors to shifting the pinning Fermi level toward the VBM. For each mechanism, we discuss in detail its underlying physics and provided some examples to illustrate the design principles. From this review, one could learn the doping principles and have a strategic mind when designing other p-type materials.

4.
Nat Commun ; 10(1): 906, 2019 02 22.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-30796227

RESUMEN

Hidden Rashba and Dresselhaus spin splittings in centrosymmetric crystals with subunits/sectors having non-centrosymmetric symmetries (the R-2 and D-2 effects) have been predicted theoretically and then observed experimentally, but the microscopic mechanism remains unclear. Here we demonstrate that the spin splitting in the R-2 effect is enforced by specific symmetries, such as non-symmorphic symmetry in the present example, which ensures that the pertinent spin wavefunctions segregate spatially on just one of the two inversion-partner sectors and thus avoid compensation. We further show that the effective Hamiltonian for the conventional Rashba (R-1) effect is also applicable for the R-2 effect, but applying a symmetry-breaking electric field to a R-2 compound produces a different spin-splitting pattern than applying a field to a trivial, non-R-2, centrosymmetric compound. This finding establishes a common fundamental source for the R-1 effect and the R-2 effect, both originating from local sector symmetries rather than from the global crystal symmetry per se.

5.
Sensors (Basel) ; 18(12)2018 Nov 23.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-30477191

RESUMEN

Strengthening existing reinforced concrete (RC) columns using a partial wrapping strengthening technique (PWST) by fiber-reinforced polymer (FRP) strips has been widely implemented. However, compared with the confinement mechanism of confined concrete in columns strengthened with the FRP full wrapping strengthening technique (FWST), the confinement mechanism of confined concrete in FRP partially wrapped columns is less understood. This paper presents the results of an experimental investigation into the behavior of confined concrete in FRP partially wrapped square columns under axial compression. The effects of FRP strip width and thickness on stress⁻strain behavior were thoroughly investigated. The novel particle image velocimetry (PIV) non-contact strain sensing technique was adopted to measure the strain in the specimens. Results show that the axial strains as well as the hoop strains are generally larger at the mid-plane of adjacent FRP strips than those at the mid-plane of each FRP strip, and considerable variation in hoop strains along the height of the specimens was observed. Comparisons between the experimental results and predictions by existing design-oriented stress⁻strain models were carried out to examine the accuracy of the models. A new design-oriented stress⁻strain model is proposed for confined concrete in FRP partially wrapped square columns and the comparisons between laboratory results and predictions from the proposed model show that the proposed model is superior to the existing models.

6.
ACS Appl Mater Interfaces ; 10(22): 19271-19277, 2018 Jun 06.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-29737827

RESUMEN

Monolayer Schottky barrier (SB) field-effect transistors based on the in-plane heterojunction of 1T/1T'-phase (metallic) and 2H-phase (semiconducting) transition-metal dichalcogenides (TMDs) have been proposed following the recent experimental synthesis of such devices. By using density functional theory and ab initio simulations, intrinsic device performance, sub-10 nm scaling, and performance boosting of MoSe2, MoTe2, WSe2, and WTe2, SB field-effect transistors are systematically investigated. We find that the Schottky barrier heights (SBHs) of these in-plane 1T(1T')/2H contacts are proportional to their band gaps: the bigger band gap corresponds to bigger SBH. For four TMDs, the SBH of 1T/2H contact is always smaller than that of 1T'/2H contact. The WTe2 SB field-effect transistor can provide the best performance and satisfy the requirement of the high-performance transistor outlined by the International Technology Roadmap for Semiconductors down to a 6 nm gate length. In addition, the replacement of suitable 1T-TMD on the source/drain regions can modulate conduction band SB, leading to the 8.8 nm WSe2 SB field-effect transistor also satisfying the requirement. Moreover, the introduction of the underlap can increase the effective channel length and reduce the coupling between the source/drain and the channel, leading to the 5.1 nm WTe2 SB field-effect transistor also satisfying the International Technology Roadmap for Semiconductors high-performance requirement. The underlying physical mechanisms are discussed, and it is concluded that the in-plane SB engineering is the key point to optimize such two-dimensional devices.

7.
Nano Lett ; 18(5): 2937-2942, 2018 05 09.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-29601201

RESUMEN

The atomic structures of self-assembled silicon nanoribbons and magic clusters on Ag(110) substrate have been studied by high-resolution noncontact atomic force microscopy (nc-AFM) and tip-enhanced Raman spectroscopy (TERS). Pentagon-ring structures in Si nanoribbons and clusters have been directly visualized. Moreover, the vibrational fingerprints of individual Si nanoribbon and cluster retrieved by subnanometer resolution TERS confirm the pentagonal nature of both Si nanoribbons and clusters. This work demonstrates that Si pentagon can be an important element in building silicon nanostructures, which may find important applications for future nanoelectronic devices based on silicon.

9.
Phys Rev Lett ; 119(12): 126401, 2017 Sep 22.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-29341631

RESUMEN

The electric field manipulation of the Rashba spin-orbit coupling effects provides a route to electrically control spins, constituting the foundation of the field of semiconductor spintronics. In general, the strength of the Rashba effects depends linearly on the applied electric field and is significant only for heavy-atom materials with large intrinsic spin-orbit interaction under high electric fields. Here, we illustrate in 1D semiconductor nanowires an anomalous field dependence of the hole (but not electron) Rashba effect (HRE). (i) At low fields, the strength of the HRE exhibits a steep increase with the field so that even low fields can be used for device switching. (ii) At higher fields, the HRE undergoes a rapid transition to saturation with a giant strength even for light-atom materials such as Si (exceeding 100 meV Å). (iii) The nanowire-size dependence of the saturation HRE is rather weak for light-atom Si, so size fluctuations would have a limited effect; this is a key requirement for scalability of Rashba-field-based spintronic devices. These three features offer Si nanowires as a promising platform for the realization of scalable complementary metal-oxide-semiconductor compatible spintronic devices.

10.
Nano Lett ; 16(12): 7937-7941, 2016 12 14.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-27960529

RESUMEN

We report two orders of magnitude stronger absorption in silicon nanorods relative to bulk in a wide energy range. The local field enhancement and dipole matrix element contributions were disentangled experimentally by single-dot absorption measurements on differently shaped particles as a function of excitation polarization and photon energy. Both factors substantially contribute to the observed effect as supported by simulations of the light-matter interaction and atomistic calculations of the transition matrix elements. The results indicate strong shape dependence of the quasidirect transitions in silicon nanocrystals, suggesting nanostructure shape engineering as an efficient tool for overcoming limitations of indirect band gap materials in optoelectronic applications, such as solar cells.

11.
Phys Rev Lett ; 117(16): 165901, 2016 Oct 14.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-27792391

RESUMEN

It is well known that Cu diffuses faster than Ag in covalent semiconductors such as Si, which has prevented the replacement of Ag by Cu as a contact material in Si solar cells for reducing the cost. Surprisingly, in more ionic materials such as CdTe, Ag diffuses faster than Cu despite that it is larger than Cu, which has prevented the replacement of Cu by Ag in CdTe solar cells to improve the performance. But, so far, the mechanisms behind these distinct diffusion behaviors of Cu and Ag in covalent and ionic semiconductors have not been addressed. Here we reveal the underlying mechanisms by combining the first-principles calculations and group theory analysis. We find that the symmetry controlled s-d coupling plays a critical role in determining the diffusion behaviors. The s-d coupling is absent in pure covalent semiconductors but increases with the ionicity of the zinc blende semiconductors, and is larger for Cu than for Ag, owing to its higher d orbital energy. In conjunction with Coulomb interaction and strain energy, the s-d coupling is able to explain all the diffusion behaviors from Cu to Ag and from covalent to ionic hosts. This in-depth understanding enables us to engineer the diffusion of impurities in various semiconductors.

12.
J Am Chem Soc ; 138(26): 8165-74, 2016 07 06.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-27282781

RESUMEN

In dye-sensitized solar cells (DSCs), the electron transfer from photoexcited dye molecules to semiconductor substrates remains a major bottleneck. Replacing TiO2 with ZnO is expected to enhance the efficiency of DSCs, owing to the latter possesses a much larger electron mobility, but similar bandgap and band positions as TiO2 remain. However, the record efficiency of ZnO-based DSCs is only 7% compared with 13% of TiO2-based DSCs due to the even slower electron-transfer rate in ZnO-based DSCs, which becomes a long-standing puzzle. Here, we computationally investigate the electron transfer from the dye molecule into ZnO and TiO2, respectively, by performing the first-principles calculations within the frame of the Marcus theory. The predicted electron-transfer rate in the TiO2-based DSC is about 1.15 × 10(9) s(-1), a factor of 15 faster than that of the ZnO-based DSC, which is in good agreement with experimental data. We find that the much larger density of states of the TiO2 compared with ZnO near the conduction band edge is the dominant factor, which is responsible for the faster electron-transfer rate in TiO2-based DSCs. These denser states provide additional efficient channels for the electron transfer. We also provide design principles to boost the efficiency of DSCs through surface engineering of high mobility photoanode semiconductors.

13.
Nano Lett ; 16(3): 1583-9, 2016 Mar 09.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-26898670

RESUMEN

Comparison of the measured absolute absorption cross section on a per Si atom basis of plasma-synthesized Si nanocrystals (NCs) with the absorption of bulk crystalline Si shows that while near the band edge the NC absorption is weaker than the bulk, yet above ∼ 2.2 eV the NC absorbs up to 5 times more than the bulk. Using atomistic screened pseudopotential calculations we show that this enhancement arises from interface-induced scattering that enhances the quasi-direct, zero-phonon transitions by mixing direct Γ-like wave function character into the indirect X-like conduction band states, as well as from space confinement that broadens the distribution of wave functions in k-space. The absorption enhancement factor increases exponentially with decreasing NC size and is correlated with the exponentially increasing direct Γ-like wave function character mixed into the NC conduction states. This observation and its theoretical understanding could lead to engineering of Si and other indirect band gap NC materials for optical and optoelectronic applications.

14.
Nanoscale ; 7(38): 15757-62, 2015 Oct 14.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-26352273

RESUMEN

Rhenium disulphide (ReS2) is a recently discovered new member of the transition metal dichalcogenides. Most impressively, it exhibits a direct bandgap from bulk to monolayer. However, the growth of ReS2 nanosheets (NSs) still remains a challenge and in turn their applications are unexplored. In this study, we successfully synthesized high-quality ReS2 NSs via chemical vapor deposition. A high-performance field effect transistor of ReS2 NSs with an on/off ratio of ∼10(5) was demonstrated. Through both electrical transport measurements at varying temperatures (80 K-360 K) and first-principles calculations, we find sulfur vacancies, which exist intrinsically in ReS2 NSs and significantly affect the performance of the ReS2 FET device. Furthermore, we demonstrated that sulfur vacancies can efficiently adsorb and recognize oxidizing (O2) and reducing (NH3) gases, which electronically interact with ReS2 only at defect sites. Our findings provide experimental groundwork for the synthesis of new transition metal dichalocogenides, supply guidelines for understanding the physical nature of ReS2 FETs, and offer a new route toward tailoring their electrical properties by defect engineering in the future.

15.
Nanoscale ; 7(33): 14093-9, 2015 Sep 07.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-26243183

RESUMEN

A facile and fruitful CVD method is reported for the first time, to synthesize high-quality hexagonal SnS2 nanosheets on carbon cloth via in situ sulfurization of SnO2. Moreover, highly sensitive phototransistors based on SnS2 with an on/off ratio surpassing 10(6) under ambient conditions and a rising time as short as 22 ms under vacuum are fabricated, which are superior than most phototransistors based on LMDs. Electrical transport measurements at varied temperatures together with theoretical calculations verify that sulfur vacancies generated by the growth process would induce a defect level near the bottom of the conduction band, which significantly affects the performance of the SnS2 device. These findings may open up a new pathway for the synthesis of LMDs, shed light on the effects of defects on devices and expand the building blocks for high performance optoelectronic devices.

16.
Nano Lett ; 15(1): 88-95, 2015 Jan 14.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-25435166

RESUMEN

One-dimensional semiconductor nanowires hold the promise for various optoelectronic applications since they combine the advantages of quantized in-plane energy levels (as in zero-dimensional quantum dots) with a continuous energy spectrum along the growth direction (as in three-dimensional bulk materials). This dual characteristic is reflected in the density of states (DOS), which is thus the key quantity describing the electronic structures of nanowires, central to the analysis of electronic transport and spectroscopy. By comparing the DOS derived from the widely used "standard model", the effective mass approximation (EMA) in single parabolic band mode, with that from direct atomistic pseudopotential theory calculations for GaAs and InAs nanowires, we uncover significant qualitative and quantitative shortcomings of the standard description. In the EMA description the nanowire DOS is rendered as a series of sharply rising peaks having slowly decaying tails, with characteristic peak height and spacing, all being classifiable in the language of atomic orbital momenta 1S, 1P, 1D, etc. Herein we find in the thinner nanowires that the picture changes significantly in that not only does the profile of each DOS peak lose its pronounced asymmetry, with significant changes in peak width, height, and spacing, but also the origin of the high-energy peaks changes fundamentally: below some critical diameter, the region of atomic orbital momentum classified states is occupied by a new set of DOS peaks folded-in from other non-Γ-valleys. We describe explicitly how distinct physical effects beyond the conventional EMA model contribute to these realistic DOS features. These results represent a significant step toward understanding the intriguing electronic structure of nanowires reflecting the coexistence of discrete and continuum states. Experimental examinations of the predicted novel DOS features are called for.

17.
Nanotechnology ; 25(44): 445402, 2014 Nov 07.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-25319397

RESUMEN

We use thin tensile-strained AlAs layers to manage compressive strain in stacked layers of InAs/AlAsSb quantum dots (QDs). The AlAs layers allow us to reduce residual strain in the QD stacks, suppressing strain-related defects. AlAs layers 2.4 monolayers thick are sufficient to balance the strain in the structures studied, in agreement with theory. Strain balancing improves material quality and helps increase QD uniformity by preventing strain accumulation and ensuring that each layer of InAs experiences the same strain. Stacks of 30 layers of strain-balanced QDs exhibit carrier lifetimes as long as 9.7 ns. QD uniformity is further enhanced by vertical ABAB… ordering of the dots in successive layers. Strain compensated InAs/AlAsSb QD stacks show great promise for intermediate band solar cell applications.

18.
Nat Commun ; 4: 2396, 2013.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-24013452

RESUMEN

The long spin coherence time and microelectronics compatibility of Si makes it an attractive material for realizing solid-state qubits. Unfortunately, the orbital (valley) degeneracy of the conduction band of bulk Si makes it difficult to isolate individual two-level spin-1/2 states, limiting their development. This degeneracy is lifted within Si quantum wells clad between Ge-Si alloy barrier layers, but the magnitude of the valley splittings achieved so far is small--of the order of 1 meV or less--degrading the fidelity of information stored within such a qubit. Here we combine an atomistic pseudopotential theory with a genetic search algorithm to optimize the structure of layered-Ge/Si-clad Si quantum wells to improve this splitting. We identify an optimal sequence of multiple Ge/Si barrier layers that more effectively isolates the electron ground state of a Si quantum well and increases the valley splitting by an order of magnitude, to ~9 meV.

19.
ACS Nano ; 6(9): 8325-34, 2012 Sep 25.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-22900638

RESUMEN

CdTe/CdSe core/shell nanocrystals are the prototypical example of type-II nanoheterostructures, in which the electron and the hole wave functions are localized in different parts of the nanostructure. As the thickness of the CdSe shell increases above a few monolayers, the spectroscopic properties of such nanocrystals change dramatically, reflecting the underlying type-I → type-II transition. For example, the exciton Stokes shift and radiative lifetime increase, while the decreasing biexciton binding energy changes sign from positive to negative. Recent experimental results for CdSe nanocrystals isoelectronically doped with a few Te substitutional impurities, however, have revealed a very different dependence of the optical and electronic properties on the nanocrystal size. Here we use atomistic calculations based on the pseudopotential method for single-particle excitations and the configuration-interaction approach for many-particle excitations to investigate carrier localization and electronic properties of CdTe/CdSe nanocrystals as the size of the CdTe core decreases from a few nm (characteristic of core/shell CdTe/CdSe nanocrystals) to the single impurity limit. We find that the unusual spectroscopic properties of isoelectronically doped CdSe:Te nanocrystals can be rationalized in terms of the change in the localization volume of the electron and hole wave functions as the size of the nanocrystal increases. The size dependence of the exciton Stokes shift, exciton radiative lifetime, and biexciton binding energy reflects the extent of carrier localization around the Te impurities.


Asunto(s)
Compuestos de Cadmio/química , Modelos Químicos , Modelos Moleculares , Nanoestructuras/química , Compuestos de Selenio/química , Telurio/química , Simulación por Computador , Transporte de Electrón , Luz , Nanoestructuras/ultraestructura , Tamaño de la Partícula , Dispersión de Radiación
20.
Phys Rev Lett ; 108(2): 027401, 2012 Jan 13.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-22324706

RESUMEN

Combining two indirect-gap materials-with different electronic and optical gaps-to create a direct gap material represents an ongoing theoretical challenge with potentially rewarding practical implications, such as optoelectronics integration on a single wafer. We provide an unexpected solution to this classic problem, by spatially melding two indirect-gap materials (Si and Ge) into one strongly dipole-allowed direct-gap material. We leverage a combination of genetic algorithms with a pseudopotential Hamiltonian to search through the astronomic number of variants of Si(n)/Ge(m)/…/Si(p)/Ge(q) superstructures grown on (001) Si(1-x)Ge(x). The search reveals a robust configurational motif-SiGe(2)Si(2)Ge(2)SiGe(n) on (001) Si(x)Ge(1-x) substrate (x≤0.4) presenting a direct and dipole-allowed gap resulting from an enhanced Γ-X coupling at the band edges.

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