Molybdenum disulphide is a novel two-dimensional semiconductor with potential applications in electronic and optoelectronic devices. However, the nature of charge transport in back-gated devices still remains elusive as they show much lower mobility than theoretical calculations and native n-type doping. Here we report a study of transport in few-layer molybdenum disulphide, together with transmission electron microscopy and density functional theory. We provide direct evidence that sulphur vacancies exist in molybdenum disulphide, introducing localized donor states inside the bandgap. Under low carrier densities, the transport exhibits nearest-neighbour hopping at high temperatures and variable-range hopping at low temperatures, which can be well explained under Mott formalism. We suggest that the low-carrier-density transport is dominated by hopping via these localized gap states. Our study reveals the important role of short-range surface defects in tailoring the properties and device applications of molybdenum disulphide.
We propose realizing the quantum anomalous Hall effect by proximity coupling graphene to an antiferromagnetic insulator that provides both broken time-reversal symmetry and spin-orbit coupling. We illustrate our idea by performing ab initio calculations for graphene adsorbed on the (111) surface of BiFeO3. In this case, we find that the proximity-induced exchange field in graphene is about 70 meV, and that a topologically nontrivial band gap is opened by Rashba spin-orbit coupling. The size of the gap depends on the separation between the graphene and the thin film substrate, which can be tuned experimentally by applying external pressure.
Near-to-mid-infrared photodetection technologies could be widely deployed to advance the infrastructures of surveillance, environmental monitoring, and manufacturing, if the detection devices are low-cost, in compact format, and with high performance. For such application requirements, colloidal quantum dot (QD) based photodetectors stand out as particularly promising due to the solution processability and ease of integration with silicon technologies; unfortunately, the detectivity of the QD photodetectors toward longer wavelengths has so far been low. Here we overcome this performance bottleneck through synergistic efforts between synthetic chemistry and device engineering. First, we developed a fully automated aprotic solvent, gas-injection synthesis method that allows scalable fabrication of large sized HgTe QDs with high quality, exhibiting a record high photoluminescence quantum yield of 17% at the photoluminescence peak close to 2.1 μm. Second, through gating a phototransistor structure we demonstrate room-temperature device response to reach >2 × 10 cm Hz W (at 2 kHz modulation frequency) specific detectivity beyond the 2 μm wavelength range, which is comparable to commercial epitaxial-grown photodetectors. To demonstrate the practical application of the QD phototransistor, we incorporated the device in a carbon monoxide gas sensing system and demonstrated reliable measurement of gas concentration. This work represents an important step forward in commercializing QD-based infrared detection technologies.
Perovskite oxides form a fascinating class of materials because they possess many active degrees of freedom that result in a large variety of physical effects. One important structural parameter controlling the behavior of perovskites is the tilting of the oxygen octahedral. Among other properties, this tilting is coupled with the electric and magnetic orders, which leads to novel and potentially useful phenomena; recent examples include new mechanisms for improper and triggered ferroelectricity, rich phase diagrams, and novel chiral phases, counter‐intuitive behaviors of ferroelectric and multiferroic films, and weak ferromagnetism in otherwise antiferromagnetic materials. Interestingly, most perovskites present the same tilted structures, which are few in number and fairly simple. In contrast, here we use different theoretical methods to show that a complete new family of stable phases, all displaying complex and nano‐twinned tilting patterns (as well as other anomalous properties), exists in multiferroic BiFeO3 and related compounds.
The quest for multiferroic materials with ferroelectric and ferromagnetic properties at room temperature continues to be fuelled by the promise of novel devices. Moreover, being able to tune the electrical polarization and the paramagnetic-to-ferromagnetic transition temperature constitutes another current research direction of fundamental and technological importance. Here we report on the first-principles-based prediction of a specific class of materialsnamely, R 2 NiMnO 6 /La 2 NiMnO 6 superlattices where R is a rare-earth ion-that exhibit an electrical polarization and strong ferromagnetic order near room temperature, and whose electrical and ferromagnetic properties can be tuned by means of chemical pressure and/or epitaxial strain. Analysis of the first-principles results naturally explains the origins of these highly desired features.
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