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Phosphorene: from theory to applications


2D materials are the focus of an intense research effort because of their unique properties and their potential for revealing intriguing new phenomena. Phosphorene, a monolayer of black phosphorus, earned its place among the family of 2D semiconductor materials when recent results unveiled its high carrier mobility, high optical and UV absorption, and other attractive properties, which are of particular interest for optoelectronic applications. Unlike graphene, phosphorene has an anisotropic orthorhombic structure that is ductile along one of the in-plane crystal directions but stiff along the other. This results in unusual mechanical, electronic, optical and transport properties that reflect the anisotropy of the lattice. This Review summarizes the physical properties of phosphorene and highlights the recent progress made in the preparation, isolation and characterization of this material. The role of defects and doping is discussed, and phosphorene-based devices are surveyed; finally, the remaining challenges and potential applications of phosphorene are outlined.

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Figure 1: Band structure of phosphorene.
Figure 2: Optical properties of phosphorene.
Figure 3: Phonon band structure and Raman spectra of phosphorene.
Figure 4: Synthesis of black phosphorus.
Figure 5: Encapsulation of phosphorene for protection against oxidation.
Figure 6: Defects in phosphorene.
Figure 7: Phosphorene-based devices.


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M.W. acknowledges the financial support from the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant No. 21203154). Work at NTU was supported in part by Air Force Office of Scientific Research (Grant no. AFRLAFOSR/AOARD 134074), MOE Tier-2 grant (no. MOE2013-T2-2-049), and A*STAR SERC Grant (no. 1121202012). A.C., A.S.R. and A.H.C.N. were supported by the National Research Foundation, Prime Minister Office, Singapore, under its Medium Sized Centre Programme and CRP award “Novel 2D materials with tailored properties: beyond graphene” (Grant number R-144-000-295-281).

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Correspondence to Haibin Su or Antonio H. Castro Neto.

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Supplementary information

Supplementary information S1 (table)

Elastic constants for bulk black phosphorus (PDF 88 kb)

Supplementary information S2 (table)

Bandgap energies (PDF 51 kb)

Supplementary information S3 (table)

Effective masses (PDF 58 kb)

Supplementary information S4 (table)

Vibrational modes (PDF 60 kb)

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Carvalho, A., Wang, M., Zhu, X. et al. Phosphorene: from theory to applications. Nat Rev Mater 1, 16061 (2016).

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