High oscillator strength interlayer excitons in two-dimensional heterostructures for mid-infrared photodetection

Steven Lukman, Lu Ding, Lei Xu, Ye Tao, Anders C. Riis-Jensen, Gang Zhang, Qing Yang Steve Wu, Ming Yang, Sheng Luo, Chuanghan Hsu, Liangzi Yao, Gengchiau Liang, Hsin Lin, Yong Wei Zhang, Kristian S. Thygesen, Qi Jie Wang, Yuanping Feng, Jinghua Teng*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


The development of infrared photodetectors is mainly limited by the choice of available materials and the intricate crystal growth process. Moreover, thermally activated carriers in traditional III–V and II–VI semiconductors enforce low operating temperatures in the infrared photodetectors. Here we demonstrate infrared photodetection enabled by interlayer excitons (ILEs) generated between tungsten and hafnium disulfide, WS2/HfS2. The photodetector operates at room temperature and shows an even higher performance at higher temperatures owing to the large exciton binding energy and phonon-assisted optical transition. The unique band alignment in the WS2/HfS2 heterostructure allows interlayer bandgap tuning from the mid- to long-wave infrared spectrum. We postulate that the sizeable charge delocalization and ILE accumulation at the interface result in a greatly enhanced oscillator strength of the ILEs and a high responsivity of the photodetector. The sensitivity of ILEs to the thickness of two-dimensional materials and the external field provides an excellent platform to realize robust tunable room temperature infrared photodetectors.
Original languageEnglish
JournalNature Nanotechnology
Issue number8
Pages (from-to)675-682
Publication statusPublished - 2020

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