Skip to main content

Thank you for visiting You are using a browser version with limited support for CSS. To obtain the best experience, we recommend you use a more up to date browser (or turn off compatibility mode in Internet Explorer). In the meantime, to ensure continued support, we are displaying the site without styles and JavaScript.

Volume 22 Issue 9, September 2023

Plasticity driven by amorphous shear bands

Amorphous shear bands in crystalline materials can be engineered to accommodate plastic deformation and increase the toughness of brittle materials.

See Hu et al.

Image: Xin Zou, University of Wisconsin–Madison. Cover design: Lauren Heslop


  • Peer review has long been established as the gold standard for scientific publishing, but changes in the publishing ecosystem should not influence author response to the views of their peers.



Top of page ⤴

News & Views

  • Piezoresponse microscopy and spectroscopy reveal the inextricable role of surface electrochemistry in stabilizing and controlling ferroelectricity in doped hafnia.

    • Xia Hong
    News & Views
  • In a non-collinear antiferromagnet, elementary spins rotate with opposite handedness with respect to the collective octupole magnetic moment when stirred by spin currents.

    • Enrique del Barco
    • Andrew D. Kent
    News & Views
  • Photochromic molecular crystal arrays aligned in the micropores of a polymer membrane show high-performance actuation when stimulated by light. These soft composites might find applications in soft robotic devices.

    • Albert P. H. J. Schenning
    News & Views
  • By tracking the electrochromic doping front, a hole-limited electrochemical doping mechanism is discovered in organic mixed ionic–electronic conductors.

    • Ruiheng Wu
    • Dilara Meli
    • Jonathan Rivnay
    News & Views
  • Amorphization can be an additional mechanism to assist plastic deformation in crystalline materials, providing a strategy to improve the load-bearing ability of brittle materials.

    • Shiteng Zhao
    • Xiaolei Wu
    News & Views
  • Using the van der Waals crystal Sb2O3 as a buffer layer enables the growth of high-κ dielectrics on two-dimensional materials via atomic layer deposition.

    • Yang Liu
    • James C. Hone
    News & Views
Top of page ⤴

Research Briefings

  • Inspired by valley pseudospins in two-dimensional materials, high-quality-factor (high-Q) spin–valley states were created through the photonic Rashba-type spin splitting of a bound state in the continuum. This approach enabled the construction of a coherent and controllable spin-optical laser using monolayer-integrated spin–valley microcavities without requiring magnetic fields or cryogenic temperatures.

    Research Briefing
  • By optimizing the molecular organization of blue-emitting organic semiconductors, the vulnerability of the materials to extrinsic impurities that cause charge trapping, such as oxygen and water, is strongly reduced. Steric shielding of the electron-transporting core is shown to increase the electron transport by several orders of magnitude.

    Research Briefing
Top of page ⤴


  • We report compact spin-valley-locked perovskite emitting metasurfaces where spin-dependent geometric phases are imparted into bound states in the continuum via Brillouin zone folding, simultaneously enabling chiral purity, directionality and large emission angles.

    • Yang Chen
    • Jiangang Feng
    • Cheng-Wei Qiu
Top of page ⤴


  • The authors introduce a spin-optical laser based on a monolayer transition metal dichalcogenide coupled to a heterostructure microcavity supporting high-Q spin-valley resonances originating from photonic Rashba-type spin splitting of a bound state in the continuum.

    • Kexiu Rong
    • Xiaoyang Duan
    • Erez Hasman
  • The authors demonstrate exciton-assisted resonant electron tunnelling in van der Waals heterostructure tunnel junctions. Their study elucidates tunnelling mechanisms involving either indirect or direct excitons in the absence of charge injection and reveals excitonic light emission driven by inelastic electron tunnelling.

    • Lujun Wang
    • Sotirios Papadopoulos
    • Lukas Novotny
    Article Open Access
  • Extrinsic impurities may trap electrons or holes leading to imbalanced charge transport in wide band gap organic semiconductors. Here the authors propose a bottom-up design strategy by spatially separating HOMO and LUMO orbitals to avoid charge trapping, enhancing charge transport by orders of magnitude.

    • Oskar Sachnik
    • Xiao Tan
    • Paul W. M. Blom
    Article Open Access
  • Electrochemical doping is assumed to be limited by ion motion due to large mass in mixed ionic-electronic conductors. Here, the authors reveal in a typical polythiophene that electrochemical doping speeds are limited by poor hole transport at low doping levels, leading to much slower switching speeds than expected.

    • Scott T. Keene
    • Joonatan E. M. Laulainen
    • George G. Malliaras
    Article Open Access
  • The two-dimensional layered crystal structure of niobium oxide polymorph T-Nb2O5 exhibits fast Li-ion diffusion that is promising for energy storage applications. Epitaxial growth of single-crystalline T-Nb2O5 thin films with ionic transport channels oriented perpendicular to the surface are now demonstrated.

    • Hyeon Han
    • Quentin Jacquet
    • Stuart S. P. Parkin
    Article Open Access
  • Ferroelectricity in hafnia-based systems seems to be correlated with oxygen vacancy dynamics, but the coupling of this and ferroelectric response is rarely studied. Here it is shown that Hf0.5Zr0.5O2 can be antiferroionic, with antiferroelectric behaviour coupled to surface electrochemistry.

    • Kyle P. Kelley
    • Anna N. Morozovska
    • Sergei V. Kalinin
  • Photomechanical crystals are promising materials for converting photon energy into macroscopic work via reversible structural changes when exposed to light. Here the authors demonstrate highly ordered and compliant microcrystalline composites with a photomechanical performance exceeding that of single crystals.

    • Wenwen Xu
    • David M. Sanchez
    • Ryan C. Hayward
Top of page ⤴

Amendments & Corrections

Top of page ⤴


Quick links