Bandgap tunability at single-layer molybdenum disulphide grain boundaries

Two-dimensional transition metal dichalcogenides have emerged as a new class of semiconductor materials with novel electronic and optical properties of interest to future nanoelectronics technology. Single-layer molybdenum disulphide, which represents a prototype two-dimensional transition metal dichalcogenide, has an electronic bandgap that increases with decreasing layer thickness. Using high-resolution scanning tunnelling microscopy and spectroscopy, we measure the apparent quasiparticle energy gap to be 2.40±0.05 eV for single-layer, 2.10±0.05 eV for bilayer and 1.75±0.05 eV for trilayer molybdenum disulphide, which were directly grown on a graphite substrate by chemical vapour deposition method. More interestingly, we report an unexpected bandgap tunability (as large as 0.85±0.05 eV) with distance from the grain boundary in single-layer molybdenum disulphide, which also depends on the grain misorientation angle. This work opens up new possibilities for flexible electronic and optoelectronic devices with tunable bandgaps that utilize both the control of two-dimensional layer thickness and the grain boundary engineering.

Bandgap tunability at single-layer molybdenum disulphide grain boundaries 2015, 6:6298 Nature Communications

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