Two-dimensional transition-metal dichalcogenide (TMD) crystals are a versatile platform for optoelectronic, catalytic and quantum device studies. However, the ability to tailor their physical properties through explicit synthetic control of their morphology and dimensionality is a major challenge. Here we demonstrate a gas-phase synthesis method that substantially transforms the structure and dimensionality of TMD crystals without lithography. Synthesis of MoS2 on Si(001) surfaces pre-treated with phosphine yields high-aspect-ratio nanoribbons of uniform width. We systematically control the width of these nanoribbons between 50 and 430 nm by varying the total phosphine dosage during the surface treatment step. Aberration-corrected electron microscopy reveals that the nanoribbons are predominantly 2H phase with zig-zag edges and an edge quality that is comparable to, or better than, that of graphene and TMD nanoribbons prepared through conventional top-down processing. Owing to their restricted dimensionality, the nominally one-dimensional MoS2 nanocrystals exhibit photoluminescence 50 meV higher in energy than that from two-dimensional MoS2 crystals. Moreover, this emission is precisely tunable through synthetic control of crystal width. Directed crystal growth on designer substrates has the potential to enable the preparation of low-dimensional materials with prescribed morphologies and tunable or emergent optoelectronic properties.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
- Biomedical Engineering
- Materials Science(all)
- Condensed Matter Physics
- Electrical and Electronic Engineering