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Magnetism in semiconducting molybdenum dichalcogenides


Abstract

Transition metal dichalcogenides (TMDs) are interesting for understanding the fundamental physics of two-dimensional (2D) materials as well as for applications to many emerging technologies, including spin electronics. Here, we report the discovery of long-range magnetic order below <jats:italic>T</jats:italic><jats:sub>M</jats:sub> = 40 and 100 K in bulk semiconducting TMDs 2H-MoTe<jats:sub>2</jats:sub> and 2H-MoSe<jats:sub>2</jats:sub>, respectively, by means of muon spin rotation (μSR), scanning tunneling microscopy (STM), and density functional theory (DFT) calculations. The μSR measurements show the presence of large and homogeneous internal magnetic fields at low temperatures in both compounds indicative of long-range magnetic order. DFT calculations show that this magnetism is promoted by the presence of defects in the crystal. The STM measurements show that the vast majority of defects in these materials are metal vacancies and chalcogen-metal antisites, which are randomly distributed in the lattice at the subpercent level. DFT indicates that the antisite defects are magnetic with a magnetic moment in the range of 0.9 to 2.8 μ<jats:sub>B</jats:sub>. Further, we find that the magnetic order stabilized in 2H-MoTe<jats:sub>2</jats:sub> and 2H-MoSe<jats:sub>2</jats:sub> is highly sensitive to hydrostatic pressure. These observations establish 2H-MoTe<jats:sub>2</jats:sub> and 2H-MoSe<jats:sub>2</jats:sub> as a new class of magnetic semiconductors and open a path to studying the interplay of 2D physics and magnetism in these interesting semiconductors.

Abstract

Transition metal dichalcogenides (TMDs) are interesting for understanding the fundamental physics of two-dimensional (2D) materials as well as for applications to many emerging technologies, including spin electronics. Here, we report the discovery of long-range magnetic order below <jats:italic>T</jats:italic><jats:sub>M</jats:sub> = 40 and 100 K in bulk semiconducting TMDs 2H-MoTe<jats:sub>2</jats:sub> and 2H-MoSe<jats:sub>2</jats:sub>, respectively, by means of muon spin rotation (μSR), scanning tunneling microscopy (STM), and density functional theory (DFT) calculations. The μSR measurements show the presence of large and homogeneous internal magnetic fields at low temperatures in both compounds indicative of long-range magnetic order. DFT calculations show that this magnetism is promoted by the presence of defects in the crystal. The STM measurements show that the vast majority of defects in these materials are metal vacancies and chalcogen-metal antisites, which are randomly distributed in the lattice at the subpercent level. DFT indicates that the antisite defects are magnetic with a magnetic moment in the range of 0.9 to 2.8 μ<jats:sub>B</jats:sub>. Further, we find that the magnetic order stabilized in 2H-MoTe<jats:sub>2</jats:sub> and 2H-MoSe<jats:sub>2</jats:sub> is highly sensitive to hydrostatic pressure. These observations establish 2H-MoTe<jats:sub>2</jats:sub> and 2H-MoSe<jats:sub>2</jats:sub> as a new class of magnetic semiconductors and open a path to studying the interplay of 2D physics and magnetism in these interesting semiconductors.

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Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:07 Faculty of Science > Department of Chemistry
Dewey Decimal Classification:540 Chemistry
Scopus Subject Areas:Health Sciences > Multidisciplinary
Language:English
Date:1 December 2018
Deposited On:07 Mar 2019 07:11
Last Modified:26 Jan 2022 20:59
Publisher:American Association for the Advancement of Science
ISSN:2375-2548
OA Status:Gold
Free access at:Publisher DOI. An embargo period may apply.
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1126/sciadv.aat3672
Project Information:
  • : FunderSNSF
  • : Grant IDPZ00P2_174015
  • : Project TitleChemistry and Physics of Nitride Based Materials

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