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Strong light–matter coupling in two-dimensional atomic crystals


Two-dimensional atomic crystals of graphene, as well as transition-metal dichalcogenides, have emerged as a class of materials that demonstrate strong interaction with light. This interaction can be further controlled by embedding such materials into optical microcavities. When the interaction rate is engineered to be faster than dissipation from the light and matter entities, one reaches the ‘strong coupling’ regime. This results in the formation of half-light, half-matter bosonic quasiparticles called microcavity polaritons. Here, we report evidence of strong light–matter coupling and the formation of microcavity polaritons in a two-dimensional atomic crystal of molybdenum disulphide (MoS2) embedded inside a dielectric microcavity at room temperature. A Rabi splitting of 46 ± 3 meV is observed in angle-resolved reflectivity and photoluminescence spectra due to coupling between the two-dimensional excitons and the cavity photons. Realizing strong coupling at room temperature in two-dimensional materials that offer a disorder-free potential landscape provides an attractive route for the development of practical polaritonic devices.

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Figure 1: Structure and optical properties of the CVD-grown MoS2 microcavity.
Figure 2: Angle-resolved reflectivity spectra of the microcavity.
Figure 3: Dispersion of microcavity polaritons.
Figure 4: Angle-resolved photoluminescence spectra of the microcavity.


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X.L., T.G., Z.S. and V.M. acknowledge support from the Army Research Office (grant no. W911NF1310001) and the National Science Foundation MRSEC programme (grant no. DMR 1120923). F.X. acknowledges support from the Air Force Office of Scientific Research. Y.H.L. and E.C.L. acknowledge support from the Ministry of Science and Technology of the Republic of China (103-2112-M-007-001-MY3). S.K.C. acknowledges support from the NSERC Discovery grant programme.

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Authors and Affiliations



V.M. and F.X. initiated the project. X.L., V.M. and F.X. designed the experiments. X.L. fabricated the microcavity samples. X.L. and Z.S. collected the data and X.L., S.K.C. and V.M. analysed it. E.C.L. and Y.H.L. grew the CVD monolayer MoS2. X.L. and T.G. performed the theoretical modelling. All authors contributed to the discussion of the results and writing the manuscript.

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Correspondence to Vinod M. Menon.

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The authors declare no competing financial interests.

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Liu, X., Galfsky, T., Sun, Z. et al. Strong light–matter coupling in two-dimensional atomic crystals. Nature Photon 9, 30–34 (2015).

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