A van der Waals interface that creates in-plane polarization and a spontaneous photovoltaic effect

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Science  02 Apr 2021:
Vol. 372, Issue 6537, pp. 68-72
DOI: 10.1126/science.aaz9146

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Engineering interface polarization

Many properties can emerge at the interface of van der Waals materials created by rotating the layers of a single material or by creating heterointerfaces between different materials. Akamatsu et al. formed an interface that intentionally broke in-plane inversion symmetry by combining crystals of tungsten diselenide with threefold rotational symmetry and black phosphorus with twofold rotational symmetry. This interface creates in-plane electronic polarization that results in a spontaneous photovoltaic effect only along the polarization direction. This effect was explained in terms of a shift current mechanism.

Science, this issue p. 68

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