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1.
Science ; 375(6579): 430-433, 2022 01 28.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-35084955

RESUMEN

In thermodynamic equilibrium, current in metallic systems is carried by electronic states near the Fermi energy, whereas the filled bands underneath contribute little to conduction. Here, we describe a very different regime in which carrier distribution in graphene and its superlattices is shifted so far from equilibrium that the filled bands start playing an essential role, leading to a critical-current behavior. The criticalities develop upon the velocity of electron flow reaching the Fermi velocity. Key signatures of the out-of-equilibrium state are current-voltage characteristics that resemble those of superconductors, sharp peaks in differential resistance, sign reversal of the Hall effect, and a marked anomaly caused by the Schwinger-like production of hot electron-hole plasma. The observed behavior is expected to be common to all graphene-based superlattices.

2.
Sci Adv ; 7(30)2021 Jul.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-34301603

RESUMEN

Photoluminescence (PL) from excitons serves as a powerful tool to characterize the optoelectronic property and band structure of semiconductors, especially for atomically thin two-dimensional transition metal dichalcogenide (TMD) materials. However, PL quenches quickly when the thickness of TMD materials increases from monolayer to a few layers, due to the change from direct to indirect band transition. Here, we show that PL can be recovered by engineering multilayer heterostructures, with the band transition reserved to be a direct type. We report emission from layer-engineered interlayer excitons from these multilayer heterostructures. Moreover, as desired for valleytronics devices, the lifetime, valley polarization, and valley lifetime of the generated interlayer excitons can all be substantially improved as compared with that in the monolayer-monolayer heterostructure. Our results pave the way for controlling the properties of interlayer excitons by layer engineering.

3.
Nat Nanotechnol ; 16(8): 869-873, 2021 Aug.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-34168343

RESUMEN

Nonlinear responses in transport measurements are linked to material properties not accessible at linear order1 because they follow distinct symmetry requirements2-5. While the linear Hall effect indicates time-reversal symmetry breaking, the second-order nonlinear Hall effect typically requires broken inversion symmetry1. Recent experiments on ultrathin WTe2 demonstrated this connection between crystal structure and nonlinear response6,7. The observed second-order nonlinear Hall effect can probe the Berry curvature dipole, a band geometric property, in non-magnetic materials, just like the anomalous Hall effect probes the Berry curvature in magnetic materials8,9. Theory predicts that another intrinsic band geometric property, the Berry-connection polarizability tensor10, gives rise to higher-order signals, but it has not been probed experimentally. Here, we report a third-order nonlinear Hall effect in thick Td-MoTe2 samples. The third-order signal is found to be the dominant response over both the linear- and second-order ones. Angle-resolved measurements reveal that this feature results from crystal symmetry constraints. Temperature-dependent measurement shows that the third-order Hall response agrees with the Berry-connection polarizability contribution evaluated by first-principles calculations. The third-order nonlinear Hall effect provides a valuable probe for intriguing material properties that are not accessible at lower orders and may be employed for high-order-response electronic devices.

4.
Nat Commun ; 12(1): 854, 2021 Feb 08.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-33558559

RESUMEN

Large optical anisotropy observed in a broad spectral range is of paramount importance for efficient light manipulation in countless devices. Although a giant anisotropy has been recently observed in the mid-infrared wavelength range, for visible and near-infrared spectral intervals, the problem remains acute with the highest reported birefringence values of 0.8 in BaTiS3 and h-BN crystals. This issue inspired an intensive search for giant optical anisotropy among natural and artificial materials. Here, we demonstrate that layered transition metal dichalcogenides (TMDCs) provide an answer to this quest owing to their fundamental differences between intralayer strong covalent bonding and weak interlayer van der Waals interaction. To do this, we made correlative far- and near-field characterizations validated by first-principle calculations that reveal a huge birefringence of 1.5 in the infrared and 3 in the visible light for MoS2. Our findings demonstrate that this remarkable anisotropy allows for tackling the diffraction limit enabling an avenue for on-chip next-generation photonics.

5.
Nat Commun ; 12(1): 347, 2021 Jan 12.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-33436620

RESUMEN

When two-dimensional crystals are brought into close proximity, their interaction results in reconstruction of electronic spectrum and crystal structure. Such reconstruction strongly depends on the twist angle between the crystals, which has received growing attention due to interesting electronic and optical properties that arise in graphene and transitional metal dichalcogenides. Here we study two insulating crystals of hexagonal boron nitride stacked at small twist angle. Using electrostatic force microscopy, we observe ferroelectric-like domains arranged in triangular superlattices with a large surface potential. The observation is attributed to interfacial elastic deformations that result in out-of-plane dipoles formed by pairs of boron and nitrogen atoms belonging to opposite interfacial surfaces. This creates a bilayer-thick ferroelectric with oppositely polarized (BN and NB) dipoles in neighbouring domains, in agreement with our modeling. These findings open up possibilities for designing van der Waals heterostructures and offer an alternative probe to study moiré-superlattice electrostatic potentials.

6.
Nat Commun ; 11(1): 5756, 2020 Nov 13.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-33188210

RESUMEN

In quantizing magnetic fields, graphene superlattices exhibit a complex fractal spectrum often referred to as the Hofstadter butterfly. It can be viewed as a collection of Landau levels that arise from quantization of Brown-Zak minibands recurring at rational (p/q) fractions of the magnetic flux quantum per superlattice unit cell. Here we show that, in graphene-on-boron-nitride superlattices, Brown-Zak fermions can exhibit mobilities above 106 cm2 V-1 s-1 and the mean free path exceeding several micrometers. The exceptional quality of our devices allows us to show that Brown-Zak minibands are 4q times degenerate and all the degeneracies (spin, valley and mini-valley) can be lifted by exchange interactions below 1 K. We also found negative bend resistance at 1/q fractions for electrical probes placed as far as several micrometers apart. The latter observation highlights the fact that Brown-Zak fermions are Bloch quasiparticles propagating in high fields along straight trajectories, just like electrons in zero field.

7.
Nat Commun ; 11(1): 6021, 2020 Nov 26.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-33244001

RESUMEN

Semiconducting ferromagnet-nonmagnet interfaces in van der Waals heterostructures present a unique opportunity to investigate magnetic proximity interactions dependent upon a multitude of phenomena including valley and layer pseudospins, moiré periodicity, or exceptionally strong Coulomb binding. Here, we report a charge-state dependency of the magnetic proximity effects between MoSe2 and CrBr3 in photoluminescence, whereby the valley polarization of the MoSe2 trion state conforms closely to the local CrBr3 magnetization, while the neutral exciton state remains insensitive to the ferromagnet. We attribute this to spin-dependent interlayer charge transfer occurring on timescales between the exciton and trion radiative lifetimes. Going further, we uncover by both the magneto-optical Kerr effect and photoluminescence a domain-like spatial topography of contrasting valley polarization, which we infer to be labyrinthine or otherwise highly intricate, with features smaller than 400 nm corresponding to our optical resolution. Our findings offer a unique insight into the interplay between short-lived valley excitons and spin-dependent interlayer tunneling, while also highlighting MoSe2 as a promising candidate to optically interface with exotic spin textures in van der Waals structures.

8.
ACS Appl Mater Interfaces ; 12(24): 27758-27764, 2020 Jun 17.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-32442370

RESUMEN

Commensurability effects play a crucial role in the formation of electronic properties of novel layered heterostructures. The interest in these moiré superstructures has increased tremendously since the recent observation of a superconducting state (Nature 2018, 556, 43-50) and metal-insulator transition (Nature 2018, 556, 80-84) in twisted bilayer graphene. In this regard, a straightforward and efficient experimental technique for detection of the alignment of layered materials is desired. In this work, we use optical second harmonic generation, which is sensitive to the inversion symmetry breaking, to investigate the alignment of graphene/hexagonal boron nitride heterostructures. To achieve that, we activate a commensurate-incommensurate phase transition by a thermal annealing of the sample. We find that this structural change in the system can be directly observed via a strong modification of a nonlinear optical signal. Unambiguous interpretation of obtained results reveals the potential of a second harmonic generation technique for probing of structural changes in layered systems.

9.
Nanoscale ; 11(30): 14354-14361, 2019 Aug 01.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-31332419

RESUMEN

The knowledge of the mechanism of stress transfer from a polymer matrix to a 2-dimensional nano-inclusion such as a graphene flake is of paramount importance for the design and the production of effective nanocomposites. For efficient reinforcement the shape of the inclusion must be accurately controlled since the axial stress transfer from matrix to the inclusion is affected by the axial-shear coupling observed upon loading of a flake of irregular geometry. Herein, we study true axial phenomena on regular- exfoliated-graphene micro-ribbons which are perfectly aligned to the loading direction. We exploit the strain sensitivity of vibrational wave numbers in order to map point-by-point the strain built up along the length of graphene. By considering the balance of shear-to-axial forces, we identify the shear stress at the interface and develop a universal inverse-length parameter that governs the stress transfer process at the nanoscale. An important parameter that has come out of this approach is the prediction and measurement of the transfer length that is required for efficient stress in these systems.

10.
Nat Nanotechnol ; 14(5): 408-419, 2019 05.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-31065072

RESUMEN

The family of two-dimensional (2D) materials grows day by day, hugely expanding the scope of possible phenomena to be explored in two dimensions, as well as the possible van der Waals (vdW) heterostructures that one can create. Such 2D materials currently cover a vast range of properties. Until recently, this family has been missing one crucial member: 2D magnets. The situation has changed over the past 2 years with the introduction of a variety of atomically thin magnetic crystals. Here we will discuss the difference between magnetic states in 2D materials and in bulk crystals and present an overview of the 2D magnets that have been explored recently. We will focus on the case of the two most studied systems-semiconducting CrI3 and metallic Fe3GeTe2-and illustrate the physical phenomena that have been observed. Special attention will be given to the range of new van der Waals heterostructures that became possible with the appearance of 2D magnets, offering new perspectives in this rapidly expanding field.

11.
Nat Commun ; 10(1): 2335, 2019 05 27.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-31133651

RESUMEN

The intriguing physics of carrier-carrier interactions, which likewise affect the operation of light emitting devices, stimulate the research on semiconductor structures at high densities of excited carriers, a limit reachable at large pumping rates or in systems with long-lived electron-hole pairs. By electrically injecting carriers into WSe2/MoS2 type-II heterostructures which are indirect in real and k-space, we establish a large population of typical optically silent interlayer excitons. Here, we reveal their emission spectra and show that the emission energy is tunable by an applied electric field. When the population is further increased by suppressing the radiative recombination rate with the introduction of an hBN spacer between WSe2 and MoS2, Auger-type and exciton-exciton annihilation processes become important. These processes are traced by the observation of an up-converted emission demonstrating that excitons gaining energy in non-radiative Auger processes can be recovered and recombine radiatively.

12.
Nat Commun ; 10(1): 2330, 2019 05 27.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-31133703

RESUMEN

Monolayer transition metal dichalcogenides (TMDs) hold great promise for future information processing applications utilizing a combination of electron spin and valley pseudospin. This unique spin system has led to observation of the valley Zeeman effect in neutral and charged excitonic resonances under applied magnetic fields. However, reported values of the trion valley Zeeman splitting remain highly inconsistent across studies. Here, we utilize high quality hBN encapsulated monolayer WSe2 to enable simultaneous measurement of both intervalley and intravalley trion photoluminescence. We find the valley Zeeman splitting of each trion state to be describable only by a combination of three distinct g-factors, one arising from the exciton-like valley Zeeman effect, the other two, trion specific, g-factors associated with recoil of the excess electron. This complex picture goes significantly beyond the valley Zeeman effect reported for neutral excitons, and eliminates the ambiguity surrounding the magneto-optical response of trions in tungsten based TMD monolayers.

13.
Nat Commun ; 10(1): 1912, 2019 04 23.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-31015405

RESUMEN

Impurities produced during the synthesis process of a material pose detrimental impacts upon the intrinsic properties and device performances of the as-obtained product. This effect is especially pronounced in graphene, where surface contamination has long been a critical, unresolved issue, given graphene's two-dimensionality. Here we report the origins of surface contamination of graphene, which is primarily rooted in chemical vapour deposition production at elevated temperatures, rather than during transfer and storage. In turn, we demonstrate a design of Cu substrate architecture towards the scalable production of super-clean graphene (>99% clean regions). The readily available, super-clean graphene sheets contribute to an enhancement in the optical transparency and thermal conductivity, an exceptionally lower-level of electrical contact resistance and intrinsically hydrophilic nature. This work not only opens up frontiers for graphene growth but also provides exciting opportunities for the utilization of as-obtained super-clean graphene films for advanced applications.

14.
Sci Adv ; 5(12): eaay8897, 2019 Dec.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-32064323

RESUMEN

When two-dimensional (2D) atomic crystals are brought into close proximity to form a van der Waals heterostructure, neighbouring crystals may influence each other's properties. Of particular interest is when the two crystals closely match and a moiré pattern forms, resulting in modified electronic and excitonic spectra, crystal reconstruction, and more. Thus, moiré patterns are a viable tool for controlling the properties of 2D materials. However, the difference in periodicity of the two crystals limits the reconstruction and, thus, is a barrier to the low-energy regime. Here, we present a route to spectrum reconstruction at all energies. By using graphene which is aligned to two hexagonal boron nitride layers, one can make electrons scatter in the differential moiré pattern which results in spectral changes at arbitrarily low energies. Further, we demonstrate that the strength of this potential relies crucially on the atomic reconstruction of graphene within the differential moiré super cell.

15.
Sci Rep ; 9(1): 20286, 2019 12 30.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-31889053

RESUMEN

Plasmonic biosensing has emerged as the most sensitive label-free technique to detect various molecular species in solutions and has already proved crucial in drug discovery, food safety and studies of bio-reactions. This technique relies on surface plasmon resonances in ~50 nm metallic films and the possibility to functionalize the surface of the metal in order to achieve selectivity. At the same time, most metals corrode in bio-solutions, which reduces the quality factor and darkness of plasmonic resonances and thus the sensitivity. Furthermore, functionalization itself might have a detrimental effect on the quality of the surface, also reducing sensitivity. Here we demonstrate that the use of graphene and other layered materials for passivation and functionalization broadens the range of metals which can be used for plasmonic biosensing and increases the sensitivity by 3-4 orders of magnitude, as it guarantees stability of a metal in liquid and preserves the plasmonic resonances under biofunctionalization. We use this approach to detect low molecular weight HT-2 toxins (crucial for food safety), achieving phase sensitivity~0.5 fg/mL, three orders of magnitude higher than previously reported. This proves that layered materials provide a new platform for surface plasmon resonance biosensing, paving the way for compact biosensors for point of care testing.

16.
Nat Commun ; 9(1): 4797, 2018 11 15.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-30442886

RESUMEN

Two-dimensional transition metal dichalcogenides (TMDs) provide a unique possibility to generate and read-out excitonic valley coherence using linearly polarized light, opening the way to valley information transfer between distant systems. However, these excitons have short lifetimes (ps) and efficiently lose their valley coherence via the electron-hole exchange interaction. Here, we show that control of these processes can be gained by embedding a monolayer of WSe2 in an optical microcavity, forming part-light-part-matter exciton-polaritons. We demonstrate optical initialization of valley coherent polariton populations, exhibiting luminescence with a linear polarization degree up to 3 times higher than displayed by bare excitons. We utilize an external magnetic field alongside selective exciton-cavity-mode detuning to control the polariton valley pseudospin vector rotation, which reaches 45° at B = 8 T. This work provides unique insight into the decoherence mechanisms in TMDs and demonstrates the potential for engineering the valley pseudospin dynamics in monolayer semiconductors embedded in photonic structures.

17.
Nature ; 559(7713): 236-240, 2018 07.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-29995867

RESUMEN

Controlled transport of water molecules through membranes and capillaries is important in areas as diverse as water purification and healthcare technologies1-7. Previous attempts to control water permeation through membranes (mainly polymeric ones) have concentrated on modulating the structure of the membrane and the physicochemical properties of its surface by varying the pH, temperature or ionic strength3,8. Electrical control over water transport is an attractive alternative; however, theory and simulations9-14 have often yielded conflicting results, from freezing of water molecules to melting of ice14-16 under an applied electric field. Here we report electrically controlled water permeation through micrometre-thick graphene oxide membranes17-21. Such membranes have previously been shown to exhibit ultrafast permeation of water17,22 and molecular sieving properties18,21, with the potential for industrial-scale production. To achieve electrical control over water permeation, we create conductive filaments in the graphene oxide membranes via controllable electrical breakdown. The electric field that concentrates around these current-carrying filaments ionizes water molecules inside graphene capillaries within the graphene oxide membranes, which impedes water transport. We thus demonstrate precise control of water permeation, from ultrafast permeation to complete blocking. Our work opens up an avenue for developing smart membrane technologies for artificial biological systems, tissue engineering and filtration.

18.
Science ; 360(6395): 1339-1342, 2018 Jun 22.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-29930134

RESUMEN

The dielectric constant ε of interfacial water has been predicted to be smaller than that of bulk water (ε ≈ 80) because the rotational freedom of water dipoles is expected to decrease near surfaces, yet experimental evidence is lacking. We report local capacitance measurements for water confined between two atomically flat walls separated by various distances down to 1 nanometer. Our experiments reveal the presence of an interfacial layer with vanishingly small polarization such that its out-of-plane ε is only ~2. The electrically dead layer is found to be two to three molecules thick. These results provide much-needed feedback for theories describing water-mediated surface interactions and the behavior of interfacial water, and show a way to investigate the dielectric properties of other fluids and solids under extreme confinement.

19.
Phys Rev Lett ; 119(15): 157701, 2017 Oct 13.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-29077458

RESUMEN

We report on a "giant" quantum Hall effect plateau in a graphene-based field-effect transistor where graphene is capped by a layer of the van der Waals crystal InSe. The giant quantum Hall effect plateau arises from the close alignment of the conduction band edge of InSe with the Dirac point of graphene. This feature enables the magnetic-field- and electric-field-effect-induced transfer of charge carriers between InSe and the degenerate Landau level states of the adjacent graphene layer, which is coupled by a van der Waals heterointerface to the InSe.

20.
Science ; 357(6347): 181-184, 2017 07 14.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-28706067

RESUMEN

Cyclotron motion of charge carriers in metals and semiconductors leads to Landau quantization and magneto-oscillatory behavior in their properties. Cryogenic temperatures are usually required to observe these oscillations. We show that graphene superlattices support a different type of quantum oscillation that does not rely on Landau quantization. The oscillations are extremely robust and persist well above room temperature in magnetic fields of only a few tesla. We attribute this phenomenon to repetitive changes in the electronic structure of superlattices such that charge carriers experience effectively no magnetic field at simple fractions of the flux quantum per superlattice unit cell. Our work hints at unexplored physics in Hofstadter butterfly systems at high temperatures.

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