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Spatiotemporally controlled room-temperature exciton transport under dynamic strain

Abstract

Two-dimensional transition metal dichalcogenides provide an attractive platform for studying strain-dependent exciton transport at room temperature due to large exciton binding energy and strong bandgap sensitivity to mechanical stimuli. Here we use Rayleigh-type surface acoustic waves to demonstrate controlled and directional exciton transport under the weak coupling regime at room temperature. We screen the in-plane piezoelectric field using photogenerated carriers to study transport under type-I bandgap modulation and measure a maximum exciton drift velocity of 600 m s–1. Furthermore, we demonstrate the precise steering of exciton flux by controlling the relative phase between the input RF excitation and exciton photogeneration. The results provide an important insight into the weak coupling regime between the dynamic strain wave and room-temperature excitons in a two-dimensional semiconductor system and pave the way to exciting applications of excitonic devices ranging from data communication and processing to sensing and energy conversion.

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Fig. 1: Modulation of hBN-encapsulated monolayer WSe2 PL by the piezoelectric field of the travelling SAW.
Fig. 2: Spatiotemporal modulation of exciton density in monolayer WSe2 at room temperature under travelling wave.
Fig. 3: Exciton transport in monolayer WSe2 under incremental RF power at optical fluence of 1.2 μJ cm–2.
Fig. 4: Spatiotemporally controlled energy transport under phase-modulated optical excitation for 15 dBm RF excitation.

Data availability

The raw dataset from phase-synchronized diffusion measurements and CW PL measurements are available from the corresponding author upon reasonable request.

Code availability

The code for processing the raw TCSPC data is available from the corresponding author upon reasonable request.

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Acknowledgements

We acknowledge the help and support from the Lurie Nanofabrication Facility at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, where the device fabrication was carried out. P.B.D. acknowledges partial support of this work by the Air Force Office of Scientific Research (AFOSR) award no. FA9550-17-1-0208 and by the Army Research Office under grant no. W911NF-21-1-0207. K.W. and T.T. acknowledge support from the Elemental Strategy Initiative conducted by the MEXT, Japan (grant no. JPMXP0112101001), and JSPS KAKENHI (grant nos. 19H05790, 20H00354 and 21H05233).

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P.B.D. conceived the idea and supervised the project. K.D. fabricated and characterized the devices. Z.Lyu transferred the encapsulated monolayers on the SAW devices. P.B.D., K.D. and Z.Li. analysed the data. Growth of hBN was done by T.T. and K.W. P.B.D., K.D. and Z.Li. contributed to writing the manuscript.

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Correspondence to Parag B. Deotare.

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Nature Photonics thanks Andres Castellanos-Gomez and the other, anonymous, reviewer(s) for their contribution to the peer review of this work.

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Supplementray Figs. 1–19, Sections 1–13 and Table 1.

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Datta, K., Lyu, Z., Li, Z. et al. Spatiotemporally controlled room-temperature exciton transport under dynamic strain. Nat. Photon. 16, 242–247 (2022). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41566-021-00951-3

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