Helical edge states and edge-state transport in strained armchair graphene nanoribbons.
ABSTRACT: A helical type edge state, which is generally supported only on graphene with zigzag boundaries, is found to also appear in armchair graphene nanoribbons in the presence of intrinsic spin-orbit coupling and a suitable strain. At a critical strain, there appears a quantum phase transition from a quantum spin Hall state to a trivial insulator state. Further investigation shows that the armchair graphene nanoribbons with intrinsic spin-orbit coupling, Rashba spin-orbit coupling, effective exchange fields and strains also support helical-like edge states with a unique spin texture. In such armchair graphene nanoribbons, the spin directions of the counterpropogating edge states on the same boundary are always opposite to each other, while is not conserved and the spins are canted away from the -direction due to the Rashba spin-orbit coupling, which is different from the case of the zigzag graphene nanoribbons. Moreover, the edge-state energy gap is smaller than that in zigzag graphene nanoribbons, even absent in certain cases.
Project description:Graphene nanoribbons (GNRs) have recently emerged as alternative 2D semiconductors owing to their fascinating electronic properties that include tunable band gaps and high charge-carrier mobilities. Identifying the atomic-scale edge structures of GNRs through structural investigations is very important to fully understand the electronic properties of these materials. Herein, we report an atomic-scale analysis of GNRs using simulated X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) and Raman spectroscopy. Tetracene with zigzag edges and chrysene with armchair edges were selected as initial model structures, and their XPS and Raman spectra were analyzed. Structurally expanded nanoribbons based on tetracene and chrysene, in which zigzag and armchair edges were combined in various ratios, were then simulated. The edge structures of chain-shaped nanoribbons composed only of either zigzag edges or armchair edges were distinguishable by XPS and Raman spectroscopy, depending on the edge type. It was also possible to distinguish planar nanoribbons consisting of both zigzag and armchair edges with zigzag/armchair ratios of 4:1 or 1:4, indicating that it is possible to analyze normally synthesized GNRs because their zigzag to armchair edge ratios are usually greater than 4 or less than 0.25. Our study on the precise identification of GNR edge structures by XPS and Raman spectroscopy provides the groundwork for the analysis of GNRs.
Project description:Graphene and its quasi-one-dimensional counterpart, graphene nanoribbons, present an ideal platform for tweaking their unique electronic, magnetic and mechanical properties by various means for potential next-generation device applications. However, such tweaking requires knowledge of the electron-electron interactions that play a crucial role in these confined geometries. Here, we have investigated the magnetic and conducting properties of zigzag edge graphene nanoribbons (ZGNRs) using the many-body configuration interaction (CI) method on the basis of the Hubbard Hamiltonian. For the half-filled case, the many-body ground state shows a ferromagnetic spin-spin correlation along the zigzag edge, which supports the picture obtained from one-electron theory. However, hole doping reduces the spin and charge excitation gap, making the ground state conducting and magnetic. We also provide a two-state model that explains the low-lying charge and spin excitation spectrum of ZGNRs. An experimental setup to confirm the hole-mediated conducting and magnetic states is discussed.
Project description:We have studied numerically the penetration depth of quantum spin hall edge states in chiral honeycomb nanoribbons based on the Green's function method. The changing of edge orientation from armchair to zigzag direction decreases the penetration depth drastically. The penetration depth is used to estimate the gap opened for the finite-size effect. Beside this, we also proposed a nonlocal transistor based on the zigzag-like chiral ribbons in which the current is carried at one edge and the manipulation is by the edge magnetization at the other edge. The difficulty that the edge magnetization is unstable in the presence of a ballistic current can be removed by this nonlocal manipulation.
Project description:Zigzag edges of graphene nanostructures host localized electronic states that are predicted to be spin-polarized. However, these edge states are highly susceptible to edge roughness and interaction with a supporting substrate, complicating the study of their intrinsic electronic and magnetic structure. Here, we focus on atomically precise graphene nanoribbons whose two short zigzag edges host exactly one localized electron each. Using the tip of a scanning tunnelling microscope, the graphene nanoribbons are transferred from the metallic growth substrate onto insulating islands of NaCl in order to decouple their electronic structure from the metal. The absence of charge transfer and hybridization with the substrate is confirmed by scanning tunnelling spectroscopy, which reveals a pair of occupied/unoccupied edge states. Their large energy splitting of 1.9?eV is in accordance with ab initio many-body perturbation theory calculations and reflects the dominant role of electron-electron interactions in these localized states.
Project description:We used scattering-type scanning near-field optical microscopy (s-SNOM) to investigate the plasmonic properties of edges in well-defined graphene nanostructures, including sharp tapers, nanoribbons and nanogaps, which were all fabricated via the growth-etching chemical vapor deposition (GECVD) method. The obtained near-field images revealed the localized plasmon modes along the graphene nanoribbon; these modes strongly depended on the size of the graphene pattern, the angle of the tapered graphene and the infrared excitation wavelength. These interesting plasmon modes were verified by numerical simulations and explained by the reflection, and interference of electromagnetic waves at the graphene-SiO2 edge. The constructive interference at the graphene nanogap caused by charge accumulation was demonstrated for the first time. Using the infrared nanoimaging technique, greater plasmon broadening was observed in the zigzag edge than in the armchair edge. Our study suggests that graphene edges should be separated by an effective working distance to avoid the overlapping of localized plasmon modes, which is very important for the design of graphene-based plasmonic circuits and devices.
Project description:Because of its novel physical properties, two-dimensional materials have attracted great attention. From first-principle calculations and vibration frequencies analysis, we predict a new family of two-dimensional materials based on the idea of octet stability: honeycomb lattices of pnictogens (N, P, As, Sb, Bi). The buckled structures of materials come from the sp(3) hybridization. These materials have indirect band gap ranging from 0.43 eV to 3.7 eV. From the analysis of projected density of states, we argue that the s and p orbitals together are sufficient to describe the electronic structure under tight-binding model, and the tight-binding parameters are obtained by fitting the band structures to first-principle results. Surprisingly large on-site spin-orbit coupling is found for all the pnictogen lattices except nitrogen. Investigation on the electronic structures of both zigzag and armchair nanoribbons reveals the possible existence of spin-polarized ferromagnetic edge states in some cases, which are rare in one-dimensional systems. These edge states and magnetism may exist under the condition of high vacuum and low temperature. This new family of materials would have promising applications in electronics, optics, sensors, and solar cells.
Project description:Spin transport features of the n-type doping zigzag graphene nanoribbons (ZGNRs) with an edge contact are investigated by first principle methods, where ZGNRs are C-H2 bonded at one edge while C-H bonded at the other to form an asymmetric edge hydrogenation. The results show that a perfect spin filtering effect (100%) in such ZGNR nanojunctions can be achieved in a very large bias region for the unchanged spin states regardless of bias polarities, and the nanojunction with a contact of two C-H2 bonded edges has larger spin polarized current than that with a contact of two C-H bonded edges. The transmission pathways and the projected density of states (PDOS) demonstrate that the edge of C-H2 bonds play a crucial role for the spin magnetism and spin-dependent transport properties. Moreover, the negative differential resistance (NDR) effect is also observed in the spin-polarized current.
Project description:Development of graphene spintronic devices relies on transforming it into a material with a spin order. Attempts to make graphene magnetic by introducing zigzag edge states have failed due to energetically unstable structure of torn zigzag edges. Here, we report on the formation of nanoridges, i.e., stable crystallographically oriented fluorine monoatomic chains, and provide experimental evidence for strongly coupled magnetic states at the graphene-fluorographene interfaces. From the first principle calculations, the spins at the localized edge states are ferromagnetically ordered within each of the zigzag interface whereas the spin interaction across a nanoridge is antiferromagnetic. Magnetic susceptibility data agree with this physical picture and exhibit behaviour typical of quantum spin-ladder system with ferromagnetic legs and antiferromagnetic rungs. The exchange coupling constant along the rungs is measured to be 450?K. The coupling is strong enough to consider graphene with fluorine nanoridges as a candidate for a room temperature spintronics material.
Project description:In this work, the electronic properties of phosphorene nanoribbons with different width and edge configurations are studied by using density functional theory. It is found that the armchair phosphorene nanoribbons are semiconducting while the zigzag nanoribbons are metallic. The band gaps of armchair nanoribbons decrease monotonically with increasing ribbon width. By passivating the edge phosphorus atoms with hydrogen, the zigzag series also become semiconducting, while the armchair series exhibit a larger band gap than their pristine counterpart. The electronic transport properties of these phosphorene nanoribbons are then investigated using Boltzmann theory and relaxation time approximation. We find that all the semiconducting nanoribbons exhibit very large values of Seebeck coefficient and can be further enhanced by hydrogen passivation at the edge. Taking pristine armchair nanoribbons and hydrogen-passivated zigzag naoribbons with width N = 7, 8, 9 as examples, we calculate the lattice thermal conductivity with the help of phonon Boltzmann transport equation and evaluate the width-dependent thermoelectric performance. Due to significantly enhanced Seebeck coefficient and decreased thermal conductivity, we find that at least one type of phosphorene nanoribbons can be optimized to exhibit very high figure of merit (ZT values) at room temperature, which suggests their appealing thermoelectric applications.
Project description:The existence of a background spin current under thermodynamic equilibrium is an interesting phenomenon in the two-dimensional electron gas with Rashba spin-orbit coupling (RSOC). Here we study the equilibrium spin current (ESC) in graphene with RSOC. For an infinite graphene with uniform RSOC, we found that the ESC is proportional to λ(2) with λ the Rashba strength and mainly comes from the energy window [-λ, λ] near Dirac points. In the regime of energy far away from Dirac points, the λ(3) dependence as that in a normal two-dimensional electron gas is recovered. In a system with a normal graphene strip inserted between two Rashba graphene sheets, we found that the ESC can penetrate through the normal graphene layer (perpendicular to the interface). This unique effect can be understood by considering the spin-filtered scattering from the normal region to the RSOC region. The finding of the ESC through the normal region without RSOC advances the understanding of ESC and provides a new way to generate a pure spin current in graphene. For an experimentally accessible strength of Rashba spin-orbit coupling, the ESC remains over room temperature.