Waveguide-integrated van der Waals heterostructure photodetector at telecom wavelengths with high speed and high responsivity

Abstract

Intensive efforts have been devoted to the exploration of new optoelectronic devices based on two-dimensional transition-metal dichalcogenides (TMDCs) owing to their strong light–matter interaction and distinctive material properties. In particular, photodetectors featuring both high-speed and high-responsivity performance are of great interest for a vast number of applications such as high-data-rate interconnects operated at standardized telecom wavelengths. Yet, the intrinsically small carrier mobilities of TMDCs become a bottleneck for high-speed application use. Here, we present high-performance vertical van der Waals heterostructure-based photodetectors integrated on a silicon photonics platform. Our vertical MoTe2–graphene heterostructure design minimizes the carrier transit path length in TMDCs and enables a record-high measured bandwidth of at least 24 GHz under a moderate bias voltage of –3 V. Applying a higher bias or employing thinner MoTe2 flakes boosts the bandwidth even to 50 GHz. Simultaneously, our device reaches a high external responsivity of 0.2 A W–1 for incident light at 1,300 nm, benefiting from the integrated waveguide design. Our studies shed light on performance trade-offs and present design guidelines for fast and efficient devices. The combination of two-diemensional heterostructures and integrated guided-wave nano photonics defines an attractive platform to realize high-performance optoelectronic devices, such as photodetectors, light-emitting devices and electro-optic modulators.

Access options

Rent or Buy article

Get time limited or full article access on ReadCube.

from$8.99

All prices are NET prices.

Fig. 1: Vertical MoTe2-graphene heterostructure photodetector.
Fig. 2: Electrical characteristics of the photodetectors.
Fig. 3: Steady-state photoresponse of a waveguide photodetector featuring a MoTe2 thickness of 45 nm.
Fig. 4: Dynamic characterization of the photodetectors.
Fig. 5: Comparison of devices with different MoTe2 thicknesses and under different bias conditions.

Data availability

The data that support the findings of this study are available from the corresponding author on reasonable request.

References

  1. 1.

    Wang, Q. H., Kalantar-Zadeh, K., Kis, A., Coleman, J. N. & Strano, M. S. Electronics and optoelectronics of two-dimensional transition metal dichalcogenides. Nat. Nanotechnol. 7, 699–712 (2012).

  2. 2.

    Xiao, J., Zhao, M., Wang, Y. & Zhang, X. Excitons in atomically thin 2D semiconductors and their applications. Nanophotonics 6, 1309–1328 (2017).

  3. 3.

    Britnell, L. et al. Strong light-matter interactions in heterostructures of atomically thin films. Science 340, 1311–1314 (2013).

  4. 4.

    Withers, F. et al. Light-emitting diodes by band-structure engineering in van der Waals heterostructures. Nat. Mater. 14, 301–306 (2015).

  5. 5.

    Sun, Z., Martinez, A. & Wang, F. Optical modulators with 2D layered materials. Nat. Photon. 10, 227–238 (2016).

  6. 6.

    Bonaccorso, F., Sun, Z., Hasan, T. & Ferrari, A. C. Graphene photonics and optoelectronics. Nat. Photon. 4, 611–622 (2010).

  7. 7.

    Boltasseva, A. & Shalaev, V. M. Transdimensional photonics. ACS Photonics 6, 1–3 (2019).

  8. 8.

    Manzeli, S., Ovchinnikov, D., Pasquier, D., Yazyev, O. V. & Kis, A. 2D transition metal dichalcogenides. Nat. Rev. Mater. 2, 17033 (2017).

  9. 9.

    Mueller, T., Pospischil, A. and Furchi, M.M. 2D materials and heterostructures for applications in optoelectronics. Proc. SPIE 9467, Micro- and Nanotechnology Sensors, Systems, and Applications VII (Eds. Mueller, T., Pospischil, A. & Furchi, M. M.) 946713 (SPIE, 2015).

  10. 10.

    Liu, Y. et al. Van der Waals heterostructures and devices. Nat. Rev. Mater. 1, 16042 (2016).

  11. 11.

    Yu, W. J. et al. Vertically stacked multi-heterostructures of layered materials for logic transistors and complementary inverters. Nat. Mater. 12, 246–252 (2013).

  12. 12.

    Kim, K., Choi, J. Y., Kim, T., Cho, S. H. & Chung, H. J. A role for graphene in silicon-based semiconductor devices. Nature 479, 338–344 (2011).

  13. 13.

    Schuler, S. et al. Graphene photodetector integrated on a photonic crystal defect waveguide. ACS Photonics 5, 4758–4763 (2018).

  14. 14.

    Gan, X. et al. Chip-integrated ultrafast graphene photodetector with high responsivity. Nat. Photon. 7, 883–887 (2013).

  15. 15.

    Hone, J. et al. High-responsivity graphene-boron nitride photodetector and autocorrelator in a silicon photonic integrated circuit. Nano Lett. 15, 7288–7293 (2015).

  16. 16.

    Phare, C. T., DanielLee, Y. H., Cardenas, J. & Lipson, M. Graphene electro-optic modulator with 30 GHz bandwidth. Nat. Photon. 9, 511–514 (2015).

  17. 17.

    Schall, D. et al. Record high bandwidth integrated graphene photodetectors for communication beyond 180 gb/s. In Proc. Optical Fiber Communication Conference, M2I.4 (Optical Society of America, 2018).

  18. 18.

    Ma, P. et al. Plasmonically enhanced graphene photodetector featuring 100 Gbit/s data reception, high responsivity, and compact size. ACS Photonics 6, 154–161 (2019).

  19. 19.

    Ding, Y. et al. Ultra-compact integrated graphene plasmonic photodetector with bandwidth above 110 GHz. Nanophotonics (in the press).

  20. 20.

    Urich, A., Unterrainer, K. & Mueller, T. Intrinsic response time of graphene photodetectors. Nano Lett. 11, 2804–2808 (2011).

  21. 21.

    Mak, K. F. & Shan, J. Photonics and optoelectronics of 2D semiconductor transition metal dichalcogenides. Nat. Photon. 10, 216–226 (2016).

  22. 22.

    Bie, Y.-Q. Q. et al. A MoTe2 -based light-emitting diode and photodetector for silicon photonic integrated circuits. Nat. Nanotechnol. 12, 1124–1129 (2017).

  23. 23.

    Ma, P. et al. Fast MoTe2 waveguide photodetector with high sensitivity at telecommunication wavelengths. ACS Photonics 5, 1846–1852 (2018).

  24. 24.

    Ferrari, A. C. et al. Graphene-based integrated photonics for next-generation datacom and telecom. Nat. Rev. Mater. 3, 392–414 (2018).

  25. 25.

    Koppens, F. H. L. et al. Photodetectors based on graphene, other two-dimensional materials and hybrid systems. Nat. Nanotechnol. 9, 780–793 (2014).

  26. 26.

    Konstantatos, G. Current status and technological prospect of photodetectors based on two-dimensional materials. Nat. Commun. 9, 5266 (2018).

  27. 27.

    Buscema, M. et al. Photocurrent generation with two-dimensional van der Waals semiconductors. Chem. Soc. Rev. 44, 3691–3718 (2015).

  28. 28.

    Lopez-Sanchez, O., Lembke, D., Kayci, M., Radenovic, A. & Kis, A. Ultrasensitive photodetectors based on monolayer MoS2. Nat. Nanotechnol. 8, 497–501 (2013).

  29. 29.

    Yu, W. et al. Near-infrared photodetectors based on MoTe2/graphene heterostructure with high responsivity and flexibility. Small 13, 1–8 (2017).

  30. 30.

    Wang, F. et al. Strong electrically tunable MoTe2/graphene van der Waals heterostructures for high-performance electronic and optoelectronic devices. Appl. Phys. Lett. 109, 193111 (2016).

  31. 31.

    Octon, T. J., Nagareddy, V. K., Russo, S., Craciun, M. F. & Wright, C. D. Fast high-responsivity few-layer MoTe2 photodetectors. Adv. Opt. Mater. 4, 1750–1754 (2016).

  32. 32.

    Ruppert, C., Aslan, O. B. & Heinz, T. F. Optical properties and band gap of single- and few-layer MoTe2 crystals. Nano Lett. 14, 6231–6236 (2014).

  33. 33.

    Youngblood, N., Chen, C., Koester, S. J. & Li, M. Waveguide-integrated black phosphorus photodetector with high responsivity and low dark current. Nat. Photon. 9, 249–252 (2015).

  34. 34.

    Desiatov, B., Goykhman, I. & Levy, U. Demonstration of submicron square-like silicon waveguide using optimized LOCOS process. Opt. Express 18, 18592–18597 (2010).

  35. 35.

    Naiman, A. et al. Ultrahigh-Q silicon resonators in a planarized local oxidation of silicon platform. Opt. Lett. 40, 1892–1895 (2015).

  36. 36.

    Zomer, P. J., Guimaraes, M. H. D., Brant, J. C., Tombros, N. & Van Wees, B. J. Fast pick up technique for high quality heterostructures of bilayer graphene and hexagonal boron nitride. Appl. Phys. Lett. 105, 013101 (2014).

  37. 37.

    Lee, E. J. H., Balasubramanian, K., Weitz, R. T., Burghard, M. & Kern, K. Contact and edge effects in graphene devices. Nat. Nanotechnol. 3, 486–490 (2008).

  38. 38.

    Shin, H.-J. et al. Fermi level pinning at electrical metal contacts of monolayer molybdenum dichalcogenides. ACS Nano 11, 1588–1596 (2017).

  39. 39.

    Nakaharai, S., Yamamoto, M., Ueno, K. & Tsukagoshi, K. Carrier polarity control in α-MoTe2 Schottky junctions based on weak Fermi-level pinning. ACS Appl. Mater. Interfaces 8, 14732–14739 (2016).

  40. 40.

    Wee, A. T. S. et al. Reducing the Schottky barrier between few-layer MoTe2 and gold. 2D Materials 4, 045016 (2017).

  41. 41.

    Goykhman, I. et al. On-Chip integrated, silicon-graphene plasmonic Schottky photodetector with high responsivity and avalanche photogain. Nano Lett. 16, 3005–3013 (2016).

  42. 42.

    Mueller, T., Xia, F. & Avouris, P. Graphene photodetectors for high-speed optical communications. Nat. Photon. 4, 297–301 (2010).

  43. 43.

    Chui, C., Okyay, A. & Saraswat, K. Effective dark current suppression with asymmetric MSM photodetectors in group IV semiconductors. Photonics Tech. Lett., IEEE 15, 1585–1587 (2003).

  44. 44.

    Georgiou, T. et al. Vertical field-effect transistor based on graphene-WS2 heterostructures for flexible and transparent electronics. Nat. Nanotechnol. 8, 100–103 (2013).

  45. 45.

    Lin, J.-Y. J., Roy, A. M., Nainani, A., Sun, Y. & Saraswat, K. C. Increase in current density for metal contacts to n-germanium by inserting TiO2 interfacial layer to reduce Schottky barrier height. Appl. Phys. Lett. 98, 092113 (2011).

  46. 46.

    Zang, H.-J., Kim, G.-S., Park, G.-J., Choi, Y.-S. & Yu, H.-Y. Asymmetrically contacted germanium photodiode using a metal-interlayer-semiconductor-metal structure for extremely large dark current suppression. Opt. Lett. 41, 3686–3689 (2016).

  47. 47.

    Massicotte, M. et al. Picosecond photoresponse in van der Waals heterostructures. Nat. Nanotechnol. 11, 42–46 (2015).

  48. 48.

    He, J. et al. Electron transfer and coupling in graphene-tungsten disulfide van der Waals heterostructures. Nat. Commun. 5, 5622 (2014).

  49. 49.

    Kato, K., Hata, S., Kawano, K. & Kozen, A. Design of ultrawide-band, high-sensitivity p-i-n photodetectors. IEICE Trans. Electron. E76-C, 214–221 (1993).

  50. 50.

    Xia, F., Mueller, T., Lin, Y.-M. M., Valdes-Garcia, A. & Avouris, P. Ultrafast graphene photodetector. Nat. Nanotechnol. 4, 839–843 (2009).

  51. 51.

    Cui, Q., Ceballos, F., Kumar, N. & Zhao, H. Transient absorption microscopy of monolayer and bulk WSe2. ACS Nano 8, 2970–2976 (2014).

  52. 52.

    Shi, H. et al. Exciton dynamics in suspended monolayer and few-layer MoS2 2D crystals. ACS Nano 7, 1072–1080 (2013).

  53. 53.

    Datta, I. et al. Low-loss composite photonic platform based on 2D semiconductor monolayers. Preprint at arXiv:1906.00459. (2019).

  54. 54.

    Datta, I. et al. Composite photonic platform based on 2d semiconductor monolayers. In Proc. Conference on Lasers and Electro-Optics FTu3C.2 (Optical Society of America, 2019).

  55. 55.

    Polat, E. O. et al. Flexible graphene photodetectors for wearable fitness monitoring. Sci. Adv. 5, eaaw7846 (2019).

Download references

Acknowledgements

This research was supported by the Swiss National Science Foundation (grant no. 200021_165841). K.W. and T.T. acknowledge support from the Elemental Strategy Initiative conducted by the MEXT, Japan, A3 Foresight by JSPS and the CREST (grant no. JPMJCR15F3), JST. This work was carried out partially at the Binnig and Rohrer Nanotechnology Centre and the FIRST Centre for Micro- and Nanotechnology at ETH Zürich.

Author information

Affiliations

Authors

Contributions

N.F., P.M., J.L. and L.N. conceived the project. N.F. and P.M. designed and fabricated the devices and performed the experiments. Y.S. contributed to the experiments. A.E. contributed to the device fabrication. T.T. and K.W. synthesized the hBN crystals. N.F., P.M., J.L. and L.N. analysed the data and co-wrote the manuscript, with support from all authors.

Corresponding authors

Correspondence to Ping Ma or Juerg Leuthold or Lukas Novotny.

Ethics declarations

Competing interests

The authors declare no competing interests.

Additional information

Publisher’s note Springer Nature remains neutral with regard to jurisdictional claims in published maps and institutional affiliations.

Supplementary information

Supplementary Information

Supplementary Figs. 1–8, Table 9, discussion and refs. 1–12.

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Verify currency and authenticity via CrossMark

Cite this article

Flöry, N., Ma, P., Salamin, Y. et al. Waveguide-integrated van der Waals heterostructure photodetector at telecom wavelengths with high speed and high responsivity. Nat. Nanotechnol. 15, 118–124 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41565-019-0602-z

Download citation

Further reading