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Strong Light-Matter Interactions in Heterostructures of Atomically Thin Films

The isolation of various two-dimensional (2D) materials, and the possibility to combine them in vertical stacks, has created a new paradigm in materials science: heterostructures based on 2D crystals. Such a concept has already proven fruitful for a number of electronic applications in the area of ultrathin and flexible devices.

In this paper, just published in Science by GRC and Manchester researchers, the range of such structures to photoactive ones is expanded, by using semiconducting transition metal dichalcogenides (TMDC)/graphene stacks.

Van Hove singularities in the electronic density of states of TMDC guarantees enhanced light-matter interactions, leading to enhanced photon absorption and electron-hole creation (which are collected in transparent graphene electrodes). This allows development of extremely efficient flexible photovoltaic devices with photoresponsivity above 0.1 A/W (corresponding to an external quantum efficiency of above 30%).

This discovery has already received widespread attention in the science media.

The full text of this paper can be accessed free of charge through this page.

 

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