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Creators/Authors contains: "Sun, Kai"

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  1. Abstract Compelling evidence suggests distinct correlated electron behavior may exist only in clean 2D materials such as 1T-TaS 2 . Unfortunately, experiment and theory suggest that extrinsic disorder in free standing 2D layers disrupts correlation-driven quantum behavior. Here we demonstrate a route to realizing fragile 2D quantum states through endotaxial polytype engineering of van der Waals materials. The true isolation of 2D charge density waves (CDWs) between metallic layers stabilizes commensurate long-range order and lifts the coupling between neighboring CDW layers to restore mirror symmetries via interlayer CDW twinning. The twinned-commensurate charge density wave (tC-CDW) reported herein has a single metal–insulator phase transition at ~350 K as measured structurally and electronically. Fast in-situ transmission electron microscopy and scanned nanobeam diffraction map the formation of tC-CDWs. This work introduces endotaxial polytype engineering of van der Waals materials to access latent 2D ground states distinct from conventional 2D fabrication.
    Free, publicly-accessible full text available December 1, 2023
  2. Abstract

    The origin of the pseudogap behavior, found in many high-Tcsuperconductors, remains one of the greatest puzzles in condensed matter physics. One possible mechanism is fermionic incoherence, which near a quantum critical point allows pair formation but suppresses superconductivity. Employing quantum Monte Carlo simulations of a model of itinerant fermions coupled to ferromagnetic spin fluctuations, represented by a quantum rotor, we report numerical evidence of pseudogap behavior, emerging from pairing fluctuations in a quantum-critical non-Fermi liquid. Specifically, we observe enhanced pairing fluctuations and a partial gap opening in the fermionic spectrum. However, the system remains non-superconducting until reaching a much lower temperature. In the pseudogap regime the system displays a “gap-filling rather than “gap-closing behavior, similar to the one observed in cuprate superconductors. Our results present direct evidence of the pseudogap state, driven by superconducting fluctuations.

  3. Abstract

    Self-organized complex structures in nature, e.g., viral capsids, hierarchical biopolymers, and bacterial flagella, offer efficiency, adaptability, robustness, and multi-functionality. Can we program the self-assembly of three-dimensional (3D) complex structures using simple building blocks, and reach similar or higher level of sophistication in engineered materials? Here we present an analytic theory for the self-assembly of polyhedral nanoparticles (NPs) based on their crystal structures in non-Euclidean space. We show that the unavoidable geometrical frustration of these particle shapes, combined with competing attractive and repulsive interparticle interactions, lead to controllable self-assembly of structures of complex order. Applying this theory to tetrahedral NPs, we find high-yield and enantiopure self-assembly of helicoidal ribbons, exhibiting qualitative agreement with experimental observations. We expect that this theory will offer a general framework for the self-assembly of simple polyhedral building blocks into rich complex morphologies with new material capabilities such as tunable optical activity, essential for multiple emerging technologies.