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  1. Free, publicly-accessible full text available December 27, 2024
  2. We report on the synthesis of self-intercalated Nb1+xSe2 thin films by molecular beam epitaxy. Nb1+xSe2 is a metal-rich phase of NbSe2 where additional Nb atoms populate the van der Waals gap. The grown thin films are studied as a function of the Se to Nb beam equivalence pressure ratio (BEPR). X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy and x-ray diffraction indicate that BEPRs of 5:1 and greater result in the growth of the Nb1+xSe2 phase and that the amount of intercalation is inversely proportional to the Se to Nb BEPR. Electrical resistivity measurements also show an inverse relationship between BEPR and resistivity in the grown Nb1+xSe2 thin films. A second Nb-Se compound with a stoichiometry of ∼1:1 was synthesized using a Se to Nb BEPR of 2:1; in contrast to the Nb1+xSe2 thin films, this compound did not show evidence of a layered structure.

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  3. Abstract

    Ferromagnetism and superconductivity are two key ingredients for topological superconductors, which can serve as building blocks of fault-tolerant quantum computers. Adversely, ferromagnetism and superconductivity are typically also two hostile orderings competing to align spins in different configurations, and thus making the material design and experimental implementation extremely challenging. A single material platform with concurrent ferromagnetism and superconductivity is actively pursued. In this paper, we fabricate van der Waals Josephson junctions made with iron-based superconductor Fe(Te,Se), and report the global device-level transport signatures of interfacial ferromagnetism emerging with superconducting states for the first time. Magnetic hysteresis in the junction resistance is observed only below the superconducting critical temperature, suggesting an inherent correlation between ferromagnetic and superconducting order parameters. The 0-π phase mixing in the Fraunhofer patterns pinpoints the ferromagnetism on the junction interface. More importantly, a stochastic field-free superconducting diode effect was observed in Josephson junction devices, with a significant diode efficiency up to 10%, which unambiguously confirms the spontaneous time-reversal symmetry breaking. Our work demonstrates a new way to search for topological superconductivity in iron-based superconductors for future high Tcfault-tolerant qubit implementations from a device perspective.

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  4. Among group VI transition metal dichalcogenides, MoTe 2 is predicted to have the smallest energy offset between semiconducting 2H and semimetallic 1T′ states. This makes it an attractive phase change material for both electronic and optoelectronic applications. Here, we report fast, nondestructive, and full phase change in Al 2 O 3 -encapsulated 2H-MoTe 2 thin films to 1T′-MoTe 2 using rapid thermal annealing at 900 °C. Phase change was confirmed using Raman spectroscopy after a short annealing duration of 10 s in both vacuum and nitrogen ambient. No thickness dependence of the transition temperatures was observed for flake thickness ranging from 1.5 to 8 nm. These results represent a major step forward in understanding the structural phase transition properties of MoTe 2 thin films using external heating and underline the importance of surface encapsulation for avoiding thin film degradation. 
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  5. Graphene nanoplatelets (GnPs) are promising candidates for gas sensing applications because they have a high surface area to volume ratio, high conductivity, and a high temperature stability. The information provided in this data article will cover the surface and structural properties of pure and chemically treated GnPs, specifically with carboxyl, ammonia, nitrogen, oxygen, fluorocarbon, and argon. Molecular dynamics and adsorption calculations are provided alongside characterization data, which was performed with Raman spectroscopy, X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), and X-ray diffraction (XRD) to determine the functional groups present and effects of those groups on the structural and vibrational properties. Certain features in the observed Raman spectra are attributed to the variations in concentration of the chemically treated GnPs. XRD data show smaller crystallite sizes for chemically treated GnPs that agree with images acquired with scanning electron microscopy. A molecular dynamics simulation is also employed to gain a better understanding of the Raman and adsorption properties of pure GnPs. 
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  6. We report the polarization-dependent Raman spectra of exfoliated MoI3, a van der Waals material with a “true one-dimensional” crystal structure that can be exfoliated to individual atomic chains. The temperature evolution of several Raman features reveals an anomalous behavior suggesting a phase transition of magnetic origin. Theoretical considerations indicate that MoI3 is an easy-plane antiferromagnet with alternating spins along the dimerized chains and with inter-chain helical spin ordering. The calculated frequencies of phonons and magnons are consistent with the interpretation of the experimental Raman data. The obtained results shed light on the specifics of the phononic and magnonic states in MoI3 and provide a strong motivation for further study of this unique material with potential for future spintronic applications.

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  7. null (Ed.)
    Abstract Alloyed transition metal dichalcogenides provide an opportunity for coupling band engineering with valleytronic phenomena in an atomically-thin platform. However, valley properties in alloys remain largely unexplored. We investigate the valley degree of freedom in monolayer alloys of the phase change candidate material WSe 2(1-x) Te 2x . Low temperature Raman measurements track the alloy-induced transition from the semiconducting 1H phase of WSe 2 to the semimetallic 1T d phase of WTe 2 . We correlate these observations with density functional theory calculations and identify new Raman modes from W-Te vibrations in the 1H-phase alloy. Photoluminescence measurements show ultra-low energy emission features that highlight alloy disorder arising from the large W-Te bond lengths. Interestingly, valley polarization and coherence in alloys survive at high Te compositions and are more robust against temperature than in WSe 2 . These findings illustrate the persistence of valley properties in alloys with highly dissimilar parent compounds and suggest band engineering can be utilized for valleytronic devices. 
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