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  1. Abstract

    The valley Zeeman physics of excitons in monolayer transition metal dichalcogenides provides valuable insight into the spin and orbital degrees of freedom inherent to these materials. Being atomically-thin materials, these degrees of freedom can be influenced by the presence of adjacent layers, due to proximity interactions that arise from wave function overlap across the 2D interface. Here, we report 60 T magnetoreflection spectroscopy of the A- and B- excitons in monolayer WS2, systematically encapsulated in monolayer graphene. While the observed variations of the valley Zeeman effect for the A- exciton are qualitatively in accord with expectations from the bandgap reduction and modification of the exciton binding energy due to the graphene-induced dielectric screening, the valley Zeeman effect for the B- exciton behaves markedly different. We investigate prototypical WS2/graphene stacks employing first-principles calculations and find that the lower conduction band of WS2at theK/Kvalleys (theCBband) is strongly influenced by the graphene layer on the orbital level. Specifically, our detailed microscopic analysis reveals that the conduction band at theQpoint of WS2mediates the coupling betweenCBand graphene due to resonant energy conditions and strong coupling to the Dirac cone. This leads to variations in the valley Zeeman physics of the B- exciton, consistent with the experimental observations. Our results therefore expand the consequences of proximity effects in multilayer semiconductor stacks, showing that wave function hybridization can be a multi-step energetically resonant process, with different bands mediating the interlayer interactions. Such effects can be further exploited to resonantly engineer the spin-valley degrees of freedom in van der Waals and moiré heterostructures.

     
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  2. Strain engineering is a powerful tool in designing artificial platforms for high-temperature excitonic quantum devices. Combining strong light-matter interaction with robust and mobile exciton quasiparticles, two-dimensional transition metal dichalcogenides (2D TMDCs) hold great promise in this endeavor. However, realizing complex excitonic architectures based on strain-induced electronic potentials alone has proven to be exceptionally difficult so far. Here, we demonstrate deterministic strain engineering of both single-particle electronic bandstructure and excitonic many-particle interactions. We create quasi-1D transport channels to confine excitons and simultaneously enhance their mobility through locally suppressed exciton-phonon scattering. Using ultrafast, all-optical injection and time-resolved readout, we realize highly directional exciton flow with up to 100% anisotropy both at cryogenic and room temperatures. The demonstrated fundamental modification of the exciton transport properties in a deterministically strained 2D material with effectively tunable dimensionality has broad implications for both basic solid-state science and emerging technologies. 
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  3. Abstract Monolayer transition-metal dichalcogenides (TMDCs) show a wealth of exciton physics. Here, we report the existence of a new excitonic species, the high-lying exciton (HX), in single-layer WSe 2 with an energy of ~3.4 eV, almost twice the band-edge A-exciton energy, with a linewidth as narrow as 5.8 meV. The HX is populated through momentum-selective optical excitation in the K -valleys and is identified in upconverted photoluminescence (UPL) in the UV spectral region. Strong electron-phonon coupling results in a cascaded phonon progression with equidistant peaks in the luminescence spectrum, resolvable to ninth order. Ab initio GW -BSE calculations with full electron-hole correlations explain HX formation and unmask the admixture of upper conduction-band states to this complex many-body excitation. These calculations suggest that the HX is comprised of electrons of negative mass. The coincidence of such high-lying excitonic species at around twice the energy of band-edge excitons rationalizes the excitonic quantum-interference phenomenon recently discovered in optical second-harmonic generation (SHG) and explains the efficient Auger-like annihilation of band-edge excitons. 
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