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Van der Waals heterostructures

Nature volume 499, pages 419425 (25 July 2013) | Download Citation

Abstract

Research on graphene and other two-dimensional atomic crystals is intense and is likely to remain one of the leading topics in condensed matter physics and materials science for many years. Looking beyond this field, isolated atomic planes can also be reassembled into designer heterostructures made layer by layer in a precisely chosen sequence. The first, already remarkably complex, such heterostructures (often referred to as ‘van der Waals’) have recently been fabricated and investigated, revealing unusual properties and new phenomena. Here we review this emerging research area and identify possible future directions. With steady improvement in fabrication techniques and using graphene’s springboard, van der Waals heterostructures should develop into a large field of their own.

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Acknowledgements

We thank all participants of the Friday Graphene Seminar in Manchester for discussions, and R. Gorbachev and J. Chapman for help with the figures. This work was supported by the Royal Society, the European Research Council, the Körber Foundation, the Office of Naval Research and the Air Force Office of Scientific Research.

Author information

Affiliations

  1. School of Physics and Astronomy, University of Manchester, Manchester M13 9PL, UK

    • A. K. Geim
    •  & I. V. Grigorieva
  2. Centre for Mesoscience and Nanotechnology, University of Manchester, Manchester M13 9PL, UK

    • A. K. Geim

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Contributions

A.K.G. wrote a draft that was scrutinized and improved by both authors.

Competing interests

The authors declare no competing financial interests.

Corresponding author

Correspondence to I. V. Grigorieva.

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https://doi.org/10.1038/nature12385

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