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Author ORCID ID is 0000000341201426
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  1. The synthesis of 2D materials with no analogous bulk layered allotropes promises a substantial breadth of physical and chemical properties through the diverse structural options afforded by substrate-dependent epitaxy. However, despite the joint theoretical and experimental efforts to guide materials discovery, successful demonstrations of synthetic 2D materials have been rare. The recent synthesis of 2D boron polymorphs (that is, borophene) provides a notable example of such success. In this Perspective, we discuss recent progress and future opportunities for borophene research. Borophene combines unique mechanical properties with anisotropic metallicity, which complements the canon of conventional 2D materials. The multi-centre characteristics ofmore » boron-boron bonding lead to the formation of configurationally varied, vacancy-mediated structural motifs, providing unprecedented diversity in a mono-elemental 2D system with potential for electronic applications, chemical functionalization, materials synthesis and complex heterostructures. As a result, with its foundations in computationally guided synthesis, borophene can serve as a prototype for ongoing efforts to discover and exploit synthetic 2D materials.« less
    Cited by 2
  2. Monolayer MoS 2 has recently been identified as a promising material for high-performance electronics. However, monolayer MoS 2 must be integrated with ultrathin high-κ gate dielectrics in order to realize practical low-power devices. In this paper, we report the chemical vapor deposition (CVD) of monolayer MoS 2 directly on 20 nm thick Al 2O 3 grown by atomic layer deposition (ALD). The quality of the resulting MoS 2 is characterized by a comprehensive set of microscopic and spectroscopic techniques. Furthermore, a low-temperature (200 °C) Al 2O 3 ALD process is developed that maintains dielectric integrity following the high-temperature CVD ofmore » MoS 2 (800 °C). Field-effect transistors (FETs) derived from these MoS 2/Al 2O 3 stacks show minimal hysteresis with a sub-threshold swing as low as ~220 mV/decade, threshold voltages of ~2 V, and current I ON/I OFF ratio as high as ~10 4, where I OFF is defined as the current at zero gate voltage as is customary for determining power consumption in complementary logic circuits. Finally, the system presented here concurrently optimizes multiple low-power electronics figures of merit while providing a transfer-free method of integrating monolayer MoS 2 with ultrathin high-κ dielectrics, thus enabling a scalable pathway for enhancement-mode FETs for low-power applications.« less
  3. Lithium metal anodes can largely enhance the energy density of rechargeable batteries because of the high theoretical capacity and the high negative potential. However, the problem of lithium dendrite formation and low Coulombic efficiency (CE) during electrochemical cycling must be solved before lithium anodes can be widely deployed. Herein, a new atomic layer deposition (ALD) chemistry to realize the low-temperature synthesis of homogeneous and stoichiometric lithium fluoride (LiF) is reported, which then for the first time, as far as we know, is deposited directly onto lithium metal. The LiF preparation is performed at 150 °C yielding 0.8 Å/cycle. The LiFmore » films are found to be crystalline, highly conformal, and stoichiometric with purity levels >99%. Nanoindentation measurements demonstrate the LiF achieving a shear modulus of 58 GPa, 7 times higher than the sufficient value to resist lithium dendrites. When used as the protective coating on lithium, it enables a stable Coulombic efficiency as high as 99.5% for over 170 cycles, about 4 times longer than that of bare lithium anodes. The remarkable battery performance is attributed to the nanosized LiF that serves two critical functions simultaneously: (1) the high dielectric value creates a uniform current distribution for excellent lithium stripping/plating and ultrahigh mechanical strength to suppress lithium dendrites; (2) the great stability and electrolyte isolation by the pure LiF on lithium prevents parasitic reactions for a much improved CE. Here, this new ALD chemistry for conformal LiF not only offers a promising avenue to implement lithium metal anodes for high-capacity batteries but also paves the way for future studies to investigate failure and evolution mechanisms of solid electrolyte interphase (SEI) using our LiF on anodes such as graphite, silicon, and lithium.« less
  4. Atomically thin two-dimensional (2D) materials exhibit superlative properties dictated by their intralayer atomic structure, which is typically derived from a limited number of thermodynamically stable bulk layered crystals (e.g., graphene from graphite). The growth of entirely synthetic 2D crystals, those with no corresponding bulk allotrope, would circumvent this dependence upon bulk thermodynamics and substantially expand the phase space available for structure-property engineering of 2D materials. However, it remains unclear if synthetic 2D materials can exist as structurally and chemically distinct layers anchored by van der Waals (vdW) forces, as opposed to strongly bound adlayers. Here, we show that atomically thinmore » sheets of boron (i.e., borophene) grown on the Ag(111) surface exhibit a vdW-like structure without a corresponding bulk allotrope. Using X-ray standing wave-excited X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, the positions of boron in multiple chemical states are resolved with sub-angstrom spatial resolution, revealing that the borophene forms a single planar layer that is 2.4 angstrom above the unreconstructed Ag surface. Moreover, our results reveal that multiple borophene phases exhibit these characteristics, denoting a unique form of polymorphism consistent with recent predictions. Furthermore, this observation of synthetic borophene as chemically discrete from the growth substrate suggests that it is possible to engineer a much wider variety of 2D materials than those accessible through bulk layered crystal structures.« less
    Cited by 1
  5. Molecule–surface interactions and processes are at the heart of many technologies, including heterogeneous catalysis, organic photovoltaics, and nanoelectronics, yet they are rarely well understood at the molecular level. Given the inhomogeneous nature of surfaces, molecular properties often vary among individual surface sites, information that is lost in ensemble-averaged techniques. In order to access such site-resolved behavior, a technique must possess lateral resolution comparable to the size of surface sites under study, analytical power capable of examining chemical properties, and single-molecule sensitivity. Tip-enhanced Raman spectroscopy (TERS), wherein light is confined and amplified at the apex of a nanoscale plasmonic probe, meetsmore » these criteria. In ultrahigh vacuum (UHV), TERS can be performed in pristine environments, allowing for molecular-resolution imaging, low-temperature operation, minimized tip and molecular degradation, and improved stability in the presence of ultrafast irradiation. The aim of this review is to give an overview of TERS experiments performed in UHV environments and to discuss how recent reports will guide future endeavors. In conclusion, the advances made in the field thus far demonstrate the utility of TERS as an approach to interrogate single-molecule properties, reactions, and dynamics with spatial resolution below 1 nm.« less
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